A personal selection of photographs with their stories.
DECEMBER 2006: Christmas presents
I spent Christmas 2006 with friends in Guarulhos. Guarulhos is a metropolis that is located next to the mega city of São Paulo, and is widely known for the international airport. The friends living in Guarulhos enjoy a comfortable life: a big house, well-paid jobs. Not far from their house, only a few kilometers away, big favelas (slums) are located. Generally, favelas have a bad name, and are associated with poverty, drug lords, drug traffickers, murderers, muggers. However, the vast majority of the favelistas is peaceful and has the daily struggles for a decent life. The children lack good food, clothes, shoes and toys. Hence, my friends had gathered some money for buying little presents for these children and young mothers. On Christmas Day, I was invited to join the friends. We put on a red Christmas hat, and climbed in the pick-up truck. The driver carefully parked the truck, with the rear in the direction of the favela. Soon the first kids appeared and made others run to the truck. They eagerly accepted the little bags with toys and candies. Some of them tried to beg for another bag. It was good to see the smiles appear on their sometimes dirty faces. Our Christmas thought. I chose to show this picture, since it clearly shows that not everyone in a favela is black…
© Adriano Antoine Robbesom 2006, 2014