The FAST® Program in Tremembé, the first and only city in Brazil to offer FAST, is bringing parents and schools together for the future of the child, according to Cristiana Berthoud, Secretary of Education. “I used to say that parents only exist outside the gates. They are the school community; they belong to it but don’t act like it,” said Ms. Berthoud.
Through FAST, Tremembé families are forming stronger relationships with one another, participating more in school and becoming more comfortable interacting with teachers.
“Families are getting closer to us. They are inside the school now – something that didn’t happen before,” said Màrcia de Oliveira, School Principal.
In 2015, following a successful pilot completed the year before in three Tremembé schools, FAST was being offered in eight schools. By 2016, the program was in 16 schools.
The enthusiasm for FAST among Tremembé FAST Teams and Families is positively contagious, and it is reflected in incredible participation.
One school achieved 95 percent participation among families, according to Fernanda de Morais Zanitti, FAST Program Coordinator – an accomplishment recognized by the Mayor of Tremembé, Marcelo Vaqueli, who congratulated FAST Teams and Families on all around “massive” participation.
With such enthusiasm, families and schools are experiencing positive results.
FAST Volunteer Dárcio Barbosa shared one memorable story about a father and a daughter who, after being introduced to Special Play during FAST, were encouraged by the FAST Team to continue the one-on-one activity at home. “[The FAST Parent] said that his relationship with his daughter became much stronger,” said Mr. Barbosa. “To me, this is the result we want. We got it. It felt great to hear that [testimonial].”
For Thiago Santos, another FAST Parent, weekly FAST sessions are a time to focus on important values missing from society. These values include the healthy development of the whole family, development of parent-to-parent relationships and daily interaction between parent and child, said Mr. Santos.
By transforming relationships within, and between, families and schools through an emphasis on these values, FAST is bringing the community of Tremembé together.
“What do we want to do for our city? To create a big club – a big group – united,” said Ms. Berthoud at a FASTWORKS event in 2015. “Doesn’t matter if it’s different schools – we are a FAST family now. That’s what’s important.
All quotes courtesy of closed captions via Youtube videos created and translated by FAST in Tremembé.