Casa Transitoria: Betting on Women to Reduce Poverty
The United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals represented a global commitment to cut in half the population living in extreme poverty, and improve the lives of women and children worldwide. In Brazil, the population living in the extreme poverty represented about 16 million people in 2012. Several very successful initiatives during the Lula administration radically improved the lot of the poor in Brazil. Casa Transitoria is a charity located in the Valley of Paraíba, state of São Paulo, whose central goal is to provide extended comprehensive assistance to expectant mothers. Urbanization, migration, and social dislocations have led to the creation of slums around large Brazilian cities. Casa Transitoria is one of the nonprofit institutions committed to alleviating the problems of these families and transforming their economic and social prospects. The charity has been recognized as one of the best-managed nonprofit organizations in the country. After 40 years of service under the leadership of its original team, the organization must confront the difficult process of succession, while, at the same time, adjusting to a new set of circumstances, both at the level of the populations served and its volunteer work force.
- To illustrate the challenges of managing a philanthropic organization that deals with an extreme social and economic reality
- To examine the unique characteristics of leadership succession in a philanthropic organization
- To consider the cycle of poverty from a newer perspective
- To understand the operation of a very special organizational model run 100% by volunteers
- To appreciate the mechanisms that produce and reproduce extreme poverty, and sustain social inequalities