Maria Francisca dos Santos
"There, I didn't pay for water, light, or condominium maintenance... And here what do I pay for: everything!"
Now living in
I am from Bahia, but I like it here in Rio. I’m good here. I came here to work in a family’s house. Afterwards, I went to live in Mangueira, and I got married. I lived for 30, 25 years in the favela at the bottom of Mangueira, before I came to live here. Everyone had to leave because the government said they were going to take everyone out, that they were going to do some work there, so after so many years, everyone had to go. But no one left after a year. But it was everyone. My house is still there, but they took the roof off it. It had a bedroom, living room and bathroom. My life was there, you know. Even though I’ve left it and come here, I liked it there a lot. I didn’t have to pay energy bills, water, or maintenance fees. Here, what do I pay for: everything – water, energy, maintenance fees, all of it, my dear. My husband, who lived with me, has died. I have lived with this one for six years, along with my grandchildren and great-grandchildren. There are a lot of people living here. I liked my old house, because I could sit down there with my friends and chat. I carry on doing that with my friends who came here. You can put me in any place and I’ll live.
Reporter: Natalia Viana
Photographer: Natalia Viana