Emanuella standing outside a shack with nuns and her family

Early life

Emanuella comes from Para, the northernmost state of Brazil and is the second of three children, sharing the same mother but different fathers. Emanuella lost her father in a car accident when she was very young. With no income her mother has been forced to work away from home, in London, and the care of Emanuella falls to her grandfather and grandmother, who suffers with a spinal problem. Emanuella’s older brother Wendel was still trying to complete primary education at 15 years old and her younger sister lives in a different state with her father.

Emanuella lives with her grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins, nine people in a two bedroom home. They all rely on the small income from her grandparents’ pensions.

Emanuella has struggled to access primary education. She wakes up at six o’clock every morning to walk to school. When she gets home, she has to help her grandmother with domestic chores. The area Emanuella lives in is dangerous and she stays home on the weekends, afraid to go out.

Her future looked bleak, with access to secondary education all but impossible without help.

Emanuella sitting at a desk in class

Life at School

In 2022 Emanuella met the Sisters of Mary when they visited her community. They saw the desperate need of her situation and thanks to the kindness of our supporters they were able to offer her a place at their school in Brasilia. This was a dream for Emanuella who had no hope of paying for her schooling and she was filled with joy when she heard that she would be able to attend the Sisters’ school. She joined the Sisters of Mary at Brasilia Girlstown in January 2023. She now has new ambitions and hopes for the future. She dreams of taking a technical course to become a secretary and eventually being able to work with animals.

Thanks to our supporters, Emanuella is thriving at school and achieving her dreams of a better future for herself and her family.

“I am very happy studying here in the Sisters of Mary School. I am learning many new things about studies, and having objectives in life. Here I see the difference about the value of education and how to care of myself.” – Emanuella