have we done?
Vida Viva started in Brazil in 2001 and since then a lot has happened.
Six photo exhibitions, called life stories, were developed. Each
tells a story of a worker and his or hers occupational health problems
and the consequences for his/her life. A women working in the agricultural
sector, for instance, explains how her relationship with her husband
changed because she cannot perform any household duties anymore.
And a chemical worker shows his damaged skin that makes that he
has to wear long-sleeved shirts all day long. Click on the right
side of your screen on ‘life stories’ to see them.
Participative action research including workplace mapping has been
developed by workers, health specialist and educators. Participative
action research offers a tool for workers to research health hazards
on their work floor and to develop an action plan to deal with these
hazards. The tool is geared towards actual change on the shopfloor.
You can download the material that Vida Viva developed in Portuguese,
English, French, Dutch and Spanish.
In Brazil this tool has been carried out by 20 educators that were
trained by Vida Viva. These educators on their turn trained about
330 local union activists to use this and other methods so that
they can implement it in their unions. By means of this triple through
system an estimated 3000 union members have received training.
Vida Viva also developed an interactive audiovisual resource called
‘Raio’. This resource consists of 25 short video-clips
grouped of four modules and geared towards different audiences like
union leaders, rank-and-file members and health and safety activists.
The educators and the local trainers use the resource in special
training sessions to stimulate discussions, reflect on the several
definitions of health and to plan interventions for change on the
workplace or in the union. More than 12.000 workers have participated
in one or more of these training sessions.
To socialise effective and successful union strategies VidaViva
further developed a mechanism to discover, exchange and jointly
develop new workplace strategies. A tool serving as a workers oriented
benchmarking has been put in place, through which unions exchange
workplace problems, discover possible solutions realised by others
and develop strategies to fight for those changes.
To spread the word about Vida Viva and to give workers information
about health, their rights, the hazards that workers may face and
much more several magazines and two cartoon strip are published
so far. The strip can be downloaded here.
The Municipal Public Service Workers’ Union of Santa Catarina
signed a collective agreement with the municipality for 2006-2007
embracing several clauses reflecting Vida Viva approaches to worker
The Metalworkers’ Union of ABC in São Paulo held a
national meeting of unions to discuss a national convention on worker
safety and health in the use of presses and similar heavy machines.
The Metalworkers Union of ABC in São Paulo negotiated various
workplace changes like ergonomic changes, work rhythm and work load.
School teachers in Bahia negotiated successfully the reduction
of the number of students and further investments in schools.
Various unions succeeded the first time to negotiate working conditions
and to develop special commissions on workers health.
Click here to find leaflets about results of the project