Saturday , 20 October 2018

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Rio 2016 'hugs' the poor favelas of Brazil

Young residents of a historic region in central Rio enjoyed the chance to participate in a series of Olympic and Paralympic sports, thanks to the Rio 2016 education programme. On a sunny morning, the Transforma Sport Festival brought together people from the Gamboa district, which is home to the city’s oldest favela community, Providência, in a celebration of sport and the Olympic and Paralympic spirits.

Kids from the neighbourhood enthusiastically tried out a range of sports, some of which they had never seen before, at the Vila Olímpica community sports centre in Rio’s port area. The region is the focus a major regeneration effort, with a cable car that serves Providência’s residents inaugurated in 2014, two major new museums opened, a soon-to-be-operational light rail system and a completely redesigned waterside area transforming the previously neglected area into one of the most popular leisure spots in the city. The sports on the menu included volleyball, athletics, tennis, five-a-side football for the visually impaired, table tennis, boccia, badminton, judo, taekwondo, goalball, fencing, windsurfing, golf and canoeing.

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