Aleelba de Melo was only 17 when she joined, in 2010, the Treading Paths project. A resident of the rural municipality of Presidente Tancredo Neves (BA), the girlyoung, now 23 years old, learned how to overcome shyness and saw that she could make a difference in her region. She became, in her own words, an agent of transformation.
"I saw no prospects here and thought about moving to the big city after completing my secondary education. Little did I know that I could instead stay and grow with my community", Aleelba said. The young woman found in the Treading Paths programproject, run by the Rights and Citizenship Institute (IDC), which integrates the Odebrecht Foundation’s PDCIS programProgram, tools to play a role of leadership and social responsibility. Afterwards she began to participate in social actions developed in her municipality. "I met youth protagonism and the power to change that a young person has," she said.
It was also through the project that she found her professional vocation: pedagogy. In her own words she stated "I believe that these experiences have awakened in me interest in the humanities,". Currently, Aleelba attends the fifth semester of college and after IDC's invitation, became part of Treading Paths technical team, contributing to the formation of adolescents through socio-educational workshops. "I've been on both sides and I am proud to be an example," stressed Aleelba.
When asked what she wants for her future, Aleelba is emphatic: "Finish college, continue studying to acquire specializations and continue working in the social field, becoming thus a reference in my city for the training of youth and adolescent."
About Treading Paths
Supported by the Odebrecht Foundation’s Tribute to the Future Program, the project encourages Youth Protagonism – the philosophy that takes the youth out of a passive beneficiary position to put them as the main actor of transformation for their own reality - and provides opportunities so that adolescents learn social issues and develop leadership skills. In 2015, 40 young people completed the course.