Morro the hill with freed slaves, migrants from

Morro da Providência is one of the oldest favelas in Rio de Janiero (about 120 years old). It is located near the port of the city. The favela was developed as a temporary settlement by the victorious veterans of the Canudos War in 1897. Despite being promised land as a reward for their efforts in the war, the government never compensated the soldiers. As a result, the veterans invaded the hillside that was located across the War Ministry and named it “Morro da Favela” after a type of bush, which is native to Canudos in Bahia, where the soldiers fought. The soldiers were joined on the hill with freed slaves, migrants from the Northeast, and European migrants. It was the best place for people to settle in terms of affordable housing (building your own homes) and close proximity to work in the city. The favela’s name was later changed to Morro da Providência and what was once only a temporary setup, became a permanent community. There are now approximately over 4,000 inhabitants in Morro da Providência who have a home and a history in this community. Throughout many years, families have built their homes on the hill through sweat, physical effort, and savings of many relatives, as well as help from friends and neighbors. It’s a community that was developed in a somewhat unconventional manner, but it is a community just like any other. Providência was able to remain in its location despite attempts to remove/cleanse it. The favela was spared from removal during the military regime because the residents helped the local economy with their labor work. However, it is still not seen as a formal city even though it should be considered as any other community deserving of improvement in housing, sanitation, social services, and security without removing/kicking out the residents, promising improvement and not following through, and working on useless projects that only appease a global market.