Brazilian teenager starts free apprenticeship program at our Eco Farm

Cleiton started an apprenticeship program at our Eco Farm a couple of weeks ago. Cleiton is 20 years old and comes from the suburbs of Rio de Janeiro. He grew up in the Casa do Caminhos orphanage. Due to the lack of opportunities he has no job and has been longing for an opportunity. Bart and Hilaine (founders of Eco Caminhos) used to work in the orphanage and know Cleiton well. Recently an organization in the Netherlands offered support for a teenager to do an apprenticeship at the farm.

And so Cleiton was given the opportunity. He arrived in December. If all goes well he will stay here for at least 1 year. He is currently intensively learning about agroforestry and bioconstruction. In February he will go back to College at night to finish his school. He still needs to study for 3 years to finish school. Once he starts school he will work and learn on the farm in the mornings and study in the afternoons. He will receive school support on the farm from our volunteers.

Cleiton also gets responsibilities in the house where he needs to cook, clean and learn, for example, how to make bread. Now Cleiton’s biggest learning opportunity is personal growth. Living in a community with volunteers from across the globe is an opportunity to get to know and develop yourself.

Besides accommodation and food, he gets a stipend to cover his personal expenses and to visit his siblings now and then. The goal for Cleiton is to leave Eco Caminhos with a job. Eco Caminhos will help him to find an organization that will value his skills and compensates him fairly. The success depends fully on himself. In the program, the only 2 things we expect is motivation and respect. Even though Brazil is going through an economic crisis, there are jobs for qualified motivated workers. So now it all depends on Cleiton to keep motivation up.

The main objectives of Eco Caminhos are to share knowledge and offer opportunities to motivated people with limited options. Read more about our apprenticeship program here. 

If you want to sponsor a teenager to be able to join our program for 1 year please contact us.