Article Index

Where we live

Brazil is a country of great contradictions. Its extensive territory, natural and human resources, that make it the 6th largest economy, according to the data from the International Comparison Program, which analyzes the economies of 146 countries. However, there is still many things to be done in the areas of public health, education and sanitation.

In 2000, the United Nations – UN, analyzed the world's major problems and established 8 Millennium Development Goals – MDG to be achieved by all the countries by 2015. The goals are: To eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, to achieve universal primary education, to promote gender equality and empowering women, to reduce child mortality rates, to improve maternal health, to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases, to ensure environmental sustainability, to develop a global partnership for development.

The Millennium Development Goals Report from 2013*, launched by the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, in Geneva, stated that Latin America is on track to achieve the goal of halving the proportion of people who suffer from hunger by 2015. The proportion of unnourished people in the population decreased from 15% in 1990-1992 to 8% in 2010-2012. In the same periods, in sub-Saharan Africa, the reduction was from 32% to 27% and in the Southeast Asia, from 30% to 11%, the latter below the target set for 2015, which is 15%.

From this report is possible to know that the access to primary education was expanded in Latin America and the Caribbean with a net increase in the rate of school enrollments from 88%, in 1990, to 95%, in 2011. The number of children in school age who are out of school decreased from 7 to 3 millions and the region, achieving the equality in primary education between boys and girls. In the same periods, sub-Saharan Africa, the enrollments rates were from 53% to 77% and in Southeast Asia from 93% to 96%.

Latin America and the Caribbean are also close to achieving the goal of reducing the infant mortality rate, decreasing by 64% deaths in children below five years old between 1990 and 2011. In the sub-Saharan Africa and in the Southeast Asia the reduction was 39% and 47%, respectively.

The developing countries as a whole, are seeking to achieve the MDG established by the UN to be met by 2015. As shown in this report, several indicators were achieved to accomplish such Goals, including the reduction of the extreme poverty rate in Latin America by half. The proportion of people in the region that live with less than US$ 1.25 per day fell from 12%, in 1990, to 6%, in 2010. In sub-Saharan Africa, the reduction in the same periods were from 56% to 48% and in Southeast Asia, from 45% to 14%, again exceeding the goal for 2015, which is 21%.

Through its work, the Child’s Pastoral is contributing to Brazil and another 21 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America achieve the goals of reducing child and maternal mortality rate.

The UN report about the Millennium Development Goals

The children situation

Despite the improvements in the poverty, education and mortality rates, there are still many social inequalities that affect especially women and children. The Child’s Pastoral aims its work in children from 0 to 6 years old, preferentially the poorest in each state of Brazil and other 21 countries on three continents.
In all the regions of Brazil and the countries where the Child’s Pastoral acts there are problems like anemia, overweight and obesity, which are reaching children of all social classes. The institution has adapted its focus on malnutrition, for the current problem of obesity. Therefore, Child’s Pastoral guides the followed up families on the importance of care in the first 1,000 days of life, which can influence an individual's health forever. There are also guidance through the projects of Healthy Feeding and Nutritional Follow Up, the latter is being developed only in Brazil.

See in the table below the percentages of poor children in each Brazilian state:

Table with the percentage of poor children in each Brazilian state:


State Total of Children from 0 to 6 years old Percentage of poor children
RONDÔNIA 155.174 55,4
ACRE 93.647 73,5
AMAZONAS 448.763 74,1
RORAIMA 57.420 68,2
PARÁ 891.514 77,3
AMAPÁ 83.824 66,7
TOCANTINS 148.735 66,2
MARANHÃO 769.843 82,9
PIAUÍ 300.281 78,3
CEARÁ 779.173 77,3
RIO GRANDE DO NORTE 287.031 71,1
PARAÍBA 350.989 76,8
PERNAMBUCO 819.938 75,8
ALAGOAS 328.340 80,2
SERGIPE 203.982 74,4
BAHIA 1.289.041 75,9
MINAS GERAIS 1.550.017 53,3
ESPÍRITO SANTO 295.949 51,1
RIO DE JANEIRO 1.198.738 48,4
SÃO PAULO 3.236.424 36,8
PARANÁ 864.784 39,4
SANTA CATARINA 491.283 27,6
RIO GRANDE DO SUL 783.196 40,6
MATO GROSSO DO SUL 231.570 50,2
MATO GROSSO 295.681 47,9
GOIÁS 531.106 46,6
BRAZIL 16.715.040 56,6



According to the UN data, today 48% of the inhabitants of Sub-Saharan Africa live on less than US$ 1.25 a day, as well as 14% of those living in Southeast Asia and 6% of Latin Americans. Child’s Pastoral expanded its methodology to poor countries of these regions.

Asia: East Timor and Philippines.

Africa: Angola, Mozambique, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau and, São Tomé and Príncipe.

Latin America and Caribbean: Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, Uruguay, Dominican Republic and Haiti.

The implementation of Child’s Pastoral is developed in each country according to a schedule of organization, called “Phases of Implantation”, divided as follow: Initial, Implantation, Expansion, Consolidation and Autonomy. There are goals to be achieved so the Child’s Pastoral in that country grows and reach more poor families.

Check the maps of Child’s Pastoral


Source: Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) – Demographic Census 2000 and 2010



Situation in 2010 compared to 2000:

34.49% to 22.2% (60 dioceses)
22.1% to 17.6% (59 dioceses)
17.5% to 12.2% (61 dioceses)
12.1% to 0.1% (61 dioceses)
0.0% to 28.3% (23 dioceses)

Total number of children up to 6 years old:

year 2000: 19,771,387
year 2010: 17,016,898
(decrease of 13.9%)