We at Totally Locally are really excited to announce that we have been working behind the scenes with some amazing people in Brazil, to bring forward a change that could have a huge impact on local economies across the whole of the country.
We were approached by Brazilian Charity Rede Asta www.redeasta.com.br – an inspiring Brazilian social organisation that supports thousands of women nano-entrepreneurs, helping to reduce inequalities by supporting and boosting the creative and entrepreneurial potential of Brazilian women. It has been building real and systemic impact for over 18 years and operates on three fronts: market access, support networks and knowledge sharing.
Their recent project ‘Pertinho de Casa’ is a hyperlocalised digital platform to support nano entrepreneurs that gives them access to the digital world and allows them to connect with local consumers. It also provides training courses, free management tools and has a large peer-to-peer networking and support system. So you can see why it aligns with everything we do with Totally Locally!
Rede Asta’s mission is ‘To create actions that connect nano entrepreneurs to opportunities to generate income, have financial freedom and freedom of choice.’
CEO of Rede Asta, Alice Freitas, contacted us and asked if we would work with them on a strategy to promote localism in Brazil, highlighting the benefits of supporting local businesses across towns & cities in Brazil by starting a pilot in their home town of Nova Friburgo near Rio de Janeiro.
The entrepreneurs they support are women, most work from home and make a living from what they do, purely out of necessity. And they prop up local economies inadvertently by their natural networks but are pretty much under the radar.
At first, we were a bit shocked. “Surely Brazil is a country that is steeped in localism and everybody understands this?” “Not at all“, answered Alice, “There are a very few number of organizations and cities in Brazil that fully understand the importance and even the concept of localization. This is still a far away thematic from the center of the decision making processes in the country“.
“Rede Asta understands that in order to improve the lives of women entrepreneurs, it is necessary to improve the economy of cities.”
Alice said “Rede Asta understands that in order to improve the lives of women entrepreneurs, it is necessary to improve the economy of cities. If I had seen Totally Locally before we launched Pertinho de Casa, I would have just gone straight to them! The things we are trying to develop in Brazil – they have already done, and have a deep knowledge of. So now, as we move things forward, we are working alongside Chris & Simon (of Totally Locally) to really develop our own Brazilian version of the campaign, to start a localism movement across the whole of the country. It is essential for the well-being and future of our communities”.
Our first step has been to work alongside the Rede Asta team to help them with a stunning project of a hyper-local market, ‘Mecardo Local’, in Nova Friburgo (a City of 190k people in Rio de Janeiro Province).
Mercado Local will be housed in a building that was offered to Pertinho de Casa by ARP, a reformed former embroidery factory in that was made bankrupt after an influx of Chinese products decimated Brazil’s textile industry. The building has been re-purposed into a beautifully designed, ultra-modern space which will only be selling produce and products from the immediate area. “It will be one of very few initiatives of its kind in Brazil” said Alice.
“It is designed to be much more than a marketplace, but a place to awaken people to the importance of local businesses, build pride in the region and directly boost the local economy not only by providing its own sales but by becoming a sourcing place for the other local shops in town.
We will be using all the tools and messaging from the Totally Locally campaign, and developing new strategies with them that are unique to the Brazilian culture.”
The Totally Locally framework, as well as having been used in over 100 towns in the UK, has already seen great success in New Zealand, Australia and France, where it has been used as a basis to galvanise local communities and high streets, sparking collaboration and bringing new confidence to volunteers and town groups.
Chris: “Launching Totally Locally in Brazil with Rede Asta will be the first official partnership with a foreign NGO that we have undertaken. It brings with it a unique opportunity to measure impact and to design new strategies for resident local Economies that can be shared worldwide.”
With this in mind, we are looking to partner with Academic, Financial, and governmental organisations & NGOs in roles of measuring change & impact, support, funding and collaboration.
If you would like to be a part of this really exciting collaboration contact us at email@example.com