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News From Brazil

Submitted by Thays Oliveira.

The year in which the Remadoras Rosa do Brasil turns 10, there is news about new teams, the return of the dragon boat in the Brazilian Canoeing Confederation and the training of athletes!

Brazil is a country of great diversity, both in its physical aspects, and in its culture. Given the high growth in breast cancer cases in our country, the practice of physical activity as a determining factor in preventing and maintaining health is extremely relevant. Here in Brazil, there is a high number of assistance projects for people undergoing cancer treatment, but those who have already gone through this stage, where are they? How are they? Where are they inserted in our society? It is for these people that we fight, it is for these people that our movement goes to the “four corners” of this huge country called Brazil, including and welcoming with a single purpose – The strength of being a Pink Paddler!

This year, we celebrate 10 years of existence. A decade of hard work where we reaped good results. If we think about how many women have already been benefited, we could be attracted by the temptation of vanity and this, under no circumstances, has ever been our objective. Our mission in these 10 years and in the many others to come is to carry the message of overcoming and hope, demonstrating that women who have undergone breast cancer treatment can enjoy an active, healthy and fulfilling life.

When we think about age, 10 years old is still a child, and so be it, because children are happy, light, full of life and need food for the soul! Our “food” is to see on each person’s face the magic and enchantment of being free, light and in charge of their own destinies when boarding the Dragon Boat.

Like a child, we are in a phase of growth and learning, our movement grows and develops across the country. Today there are more than 20 cities involved with all the benefits of the project, 19 Brazilian teams and 3 more in formation (two in the state of Rio Grande do Sul and one in Rio de Janeiro). To the already consolidated teams, our deepest gratitude and to the new ones, welcome to this world of pink paddling.

Remember at the beginning when I talked about Brazil being a diverse and geographically large country? For this reason, each team presents its own challenges and also its completely different facilities and, to complement this fact, we need to mention two words used today, which are very important when talking about diversity: equality and equity.

Equality is when everyone is treated the same way and has guaranteed access to the same opportunities; equity promotes equality, but it also promotes justice. When we talk about equity, we recognize that we are not all the same - that we should all have the same opportunities, but not everyone starts from the same place and this balance is necessary.

That is why we, the Remadoras Rosa do Brasil, are here to train more and more members of the movement so that they can pass on their knowledge to their teams and thus create a sequence of learning, reducing the geographical distances that are often barriers to practical knowledge.

It was with a view to providing opportunities and qualifying the members that, on the 23rd, 24th and 25th of March, the city of Curitiba/PR hosted the “Dragon Boat Clinic” facilitated by Cleusa Alonso and Deborah Vons. The event's various courses aimed to contribute to the basic training of Pink Paddlers, contributing to the training and autonomy of the teams. We need to emphasize the important steerer course, as there is a lack of Brazilian survivors occupying this position.

The steerperson, is the crew member responsible for guiding and directing the vessel. The Latin term of the word is in the origin of “the government of the vessel”, as vessels are not guided or directed, but rather governed. Did you notice the symbolism and importance of performing this function? We, team members and breast cancer survivors need to “govern” our own lives, giving the right direction again so that the best navigations can occur, taking the entire team and the movement to a place where there is freedom and autonomy!

And the good news doesn't stop here, in March the Brazilian Canoeing Confederation (CBCA) reintroduced the Dragon Boat modality, making it a sport in Brazil again. The founder of the National Pink Movement, Cleusa Alonso, the captain of the Canoha Dragon Boat Team Debora Vons and Maria Luiza Kasuya, manager of the Rosa dos Ventos team, were received at the headquarters of the Confederation where they explained about the movement and the permanence of the sport in this important and recognized regulatory body.

For now, I'll say goodbye here! And it is with great pride and affection that I bring the good news of the Pink Movement of Brazil to you!