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May 15, 2024

An Ameropa Foundation Project: Ten Years of ‘Arena Do Morro’ in Brazil 

The ten-year anniversary of Arena Do Morro, celebrated on 22 March 2024, brought together 400 attendees to mark a decade of impactful community change. Established in 2014 through collaboration between the Ameropa Foundation, Centro Socio Pastoral, and architects Herzog & de Meuron, the arena offers free services and activities, fostering a sense of community and belonging among residents of Mãe Luiza and Natal. The existence of the arena has significantly reduced homicide rates in the area, dropping from 140 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2013 to just 25 in 2019.

Open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Arena Do Morro is more than an entertainment venue; it's a lifeline for the residents of Mãe Luiza and Natal. Offering a variety of free services and activities including sports, leisure, and cultural events, the arena is a hub for fostering a sense of community and belonging. Through these initiatives, residents become active participants in shaping and modelling the values of their neighborhood.

In a prior event held at the Swiss embassy in Brazil, Architect Pierre de Meuron presented the Arena Do Morro as an exemplar of the importance of architecture, instilling pride in the local workforce who contributed to its construction. Its establishment has also spurred government investments in public spaces and infrastructure, leading to further community development. The arena's impact extends beyond its physical walls, inspiring social movements and initiatives aimed at promoting peaceful coexistence and community engagement, showcasing the power of collective action and grassroots empowerment.
Just recently, the government of Rio Grande do Norte signed a contract with our local partner to develop strategies of social development and its implementation. So far 15 projects have been submitted.