Ivanilda Galdino

"No, I'm not trying to leave here. I'd only go if I get displaced again."

Coming from
Ladeira do Barroso, 235, apartamento 302, Providência Ladeira do Barroso, 235, apartamento 302, Providência

Now living in
Rua Frei Caneca, 461, bloco 3, apartamento 401 Rua Frei Caneca, 461, bloco 3, apartamento 401

Ivanilda Galdino, 41, maid

 

If I never had to go back to my house ever again, as basic as it was, for me that would be good. I left my house and went to another. I was in Providencia, but it was on social rent, then I found another in Caju.

 

[Why did you go to Caju?]

Because that was where I could find a place I could afford, with the money they gave me.

 

[How much was it?]

400. I searched and searched, but there was nothing in Providencia. We spent two years there, then soon after, they told me about this place. They asked me if I wanted it, and I did. I lived in Providencia for more than eight years. [My house there] had two bedrooms, a living room, kitchen and a bathroom.

 

[Who lived there with you?]

It was me and my children. It was horrible, because of the gunfights. You still get that here, but it’s right at the top. You can hear it, but in Providencia, you would get home and everyone was there, armed. It was a pain. They were right by my front door, so for me it was horrible. If the shots were coming from over there, you had to stay in your bedroom. If it was from the other direction, you had to stay in the living room. If it was coming from the front, I would go to the bathroom. It’s 10 times better here. I didn’t feel safe there. I do here, more or less. “Safe” in quote marks. Violence is huge these days, but I am much calmer.

 

Some left the favela, but others stayed. It’s noisy, but any place has noise. There is a lot of loud music. People don’t respect their neighbours. On Sunday, it goes on till 3am.

 

[What do you miss about it there?]

Nothing! I thank God I got out of there. Isn’t it better to tell the truth?

 

[Was it difficult for your children to get used to it here?]

No, it’s much better here.

 

I’ll have been here for two years soon. They arrived there and said it was an “area of risk” and that we would have to be removed.

 

[And how was the process of removal?]

We went there, they gave us our paperwork, and afterwards they told us to go to City Hall to get our social rent, that’s it.

 

[Did you see your house getting demolished?]

I still haven’t been back. My house didn’t have a lot of rot, but there was some.

 

[Did you have to do a lot of work on it?]

I had to reform the whole thing. I went through a lot there, I don’t like to remember it. I have to think about my ex-husband and I would prefer not to. If I have to remember the violence I went through… I would rather not.

 

[So you are much happier here than if you’d stayed?]

Without a doubt. I don’t know if it will be forever, because we never know what tomorrow will bring, but I don’t want to leave. Only if I get evicted again, for an even better house!

Reporter: Maria Carolina (Lina) Palhano e Mariana Passos

My journey

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