Paragominas’ population dedicated, at first, to extensive cattle raising. Afterwards, they started wood exploration and the charcoal production including children and adolescent work. The presence of youth in the productive environment was permanent, because they could not stay alone at home, becoming frequent victims of burning accidents that occurred when they circulated around kilns and “caieiras”(1). Between 1980 and 2000 accidents were registered with 20 children who suffered member mutilations and, even, death.
Demographic growth and agro-business were responsible for the appearing of new activities diversifying children’ work forms. In the search for solution instruments, policies and actions were conceived. Although being concerned about the problem and considering social inclusion, human/civil rights and citizenship, those instruments could not reach the efficiency desired due to several problems.
Aware about the situation, local authorities convoked social segments to create a program that, in the municipal area, could define levels of coordination, efforts concentration and objectives articulation. The program should establish communication channels aiming to eliminate children’ work and involve local culture actions, to include children in the educational process in an integral period basis, strengthening self-esteem, rescuing human dignity and making citizenship principles operational. The social segments convoked structured the program that started in 1999. Today, results are celebrated: children work was reduced, school frequency increased, approval and school results got better and children are now spontaneously involved in sports, leisure and cultural events. Indirectly, it is possible to perceive: stronger familiar relationships, less youth infractions, children win national and international sports competitions and the whole community is compromised in a kind of social inspection agreement.
(1)- CAIEIRA: (rudimental drains excavated in the ground where wood is deposited and then covered with soil and sawdust and burned, where the smoke is not perceived by the most attentive eyes.)