Passionate and highly skilled football player from Niterói, suburbian region of Rio de Janeiro, young student, participant of the Estrela Sports girl’s project and protagonist of the DISCOVER FOOTBALL Festival 2011 where she became the leading goalscorer, the audience’s favorite player and an example of the non-verbal communication through the joy of the game. In 2014, a few weeks before her second encounter with DISCOVER FOOTBALL in her home country, Ratinha passed away, leaving behind a large international community of mourning friends and teammates.
To Ratinha, football was love, passion and whole-body communication. She used her play to express herself and to make friends from all over the world. DISCOVER FOOTBALL had the chance to meet Ratinha in Berlin, 2011. Since then, DISCOVER FOOTBALL has always remembered and will always do
- the way she was beaming the first and the last time we met
- the way she was playing football that impressed everybody
- the way that the communication didn’t even need a common language
- the way that her positive energy was infectous on and off the pitch
- the way she was shaping the spirit of the tournament for all of her new friends from Togo, India, Ruanda, France, Palestine and Israel, Cameroun and, of course, Germany.
Place: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Founded in: 2009
Greatest success: Finding their voices as female players and community leaders
Asociación Estrela Sports
“Attitude makes difference!”
The atmosphere in the Favelas of Rio de Janeiro is often defined by drug trafficking, violence and social injustice. In combination with discriminating conventional gender notions, the resulting social barriers affect women twice as much as men. This side of Brazil is easily forgotten when talking about Brazil’s „Magical Football“, or when colourful images appear on TV screens all over the world.
Estrela Sports tackles the problems on a very basic level: The project’s main objective is to provide, through sports, children and teenagers from low-income an adequate growth and a better perspective of life, without limits and differences. For several years, Estrela sports has pursued a project for girls only in Rocinha, the largest favela in Latin America. It offers players a warm sense of community and comfort. Through sports, especially young women gain the ability to break free from traditional role models and to build up new identities for themselves. The strength they draw from playing together helps them to cope with their everyday life. Football even offers some of them a chance of financing their education through a sports-scholarship. Most of the women of Estrela Sports have been playing football since their childhood.
"The main goal is to give some to those who have none. To look at those who are not seen. We believe that everyone deserves opportunities and need to have alternatives in life."