HEARTWARMING MAN: Hero Vinicius Junior returns to his homeland to launch an educational application to support disadvantaged students in Brazil

Vinicius Junior has helped Real Madrid seize the lead in the standings following an amazing start to the season with five goals in La Liga. The twenty-one-year-old has made an impact off the pitch as well. The forward for Brazil founded Instituto Vini Jr., an organisation that attempts to educate young Brazilians through sport and technology, with the ultimate goal of creating a more just nation.

Brazil’s public education system is far from perfect in terms of quality. Rich families typically enrol their kids in pricey private schools, which give them the best chance of getting into the nation’s government colleges, which offer free admission to meritorious students. In Brazil, social mobility seems to be universal because university education is free, but wealthy parents may still easily game the system by sending their kids to prestigious private schools.

Vinicius is trying to help pupils who can’t afford a private education since he knows how difficult it can be for less fortunate children. Base, an instructional software that uses football to engage kids, was released by his organization. The software was introduced in his previous Rio school, and in the next year, it is expected to develop even more.

“My first concern was to help these young kids achieve more via education,” says Vinícius. “Even though playing football is a dream, isn’t it wonderful that we can help kids escape poverty by getting an education? My goal is to do it in the medium and long run. We need more engineers, lawyers, and medical professionals from the favelas. We are going to provide them chances.

There is still a sizable literacy gap in Brazil. Since I was familiar with the software’s operation, we ought to have implemented it at my previous school. Of course, I have a lot of fond memories from those days, but football games in particular! I just thought I was capable of more, and I actually am. Athletes have done that on many occasions. I’m inspired by the work that Lewis Hamilton, LeBron James, and Marcus Rashford are doing. So I started by doing good in my area, but who knows if it will get on across Brazil.

Vini’s home neighborhood in Rio, São Gonçalo, has always been supported by him and his family. When he was younger and not yet earning a lot of money playing football, his family gave him small gifts and offered help in every way they could. Now that he represents Brazil internationally and plays for Real Madrid, he can accomplish more. Having put in about R$2 million of his own money to start the institute, he is its sole backer.

Vinícius Jr. alia futebol e tecnologia em apoio a estudantes de São Gonçalo  - Lado de Cá - Seu portal de notícias

The idea of fusing football with education was a good one. This app makes studying possible to look forward to. We had been working on it for a year and a half, and the epidemic made us realize how important it is to give community members better living conditions. Our goal is to help close a substantial educational gap that [between the classes] exists. “When I visited them a few months ago, I saw how important this is and how the kids feel better by doing the activities,” he says.

Madrid Zone on X: "| Vinícius Júnior has launched Instituto Viní Jr, a  project focused on children's education. The first product of Instituto  Viní Jr is an app aimed to make children's

In the classroom, they make use of the program. To pass, they have to correctly finish each level and activity. We also do in-person activities with the students, including math and Portuguese, and we always use sports as the background. On the other hand, kids learn more about global social issues, such the necessity of treating everyone and the environment with respect.

Vini Jr. on X: "Quer ganhar essa camisa?  Clica nesse link   https://t.co/PbgyYa1Pyd https://t.co/Jw6wbKYOh3" / X

Bruna Ferreira Matos, an eight-year-old student at the institution, is one of the kids utilizing the app. She is happy to be a part of it. It is filled with puzzles. I thought learning with Base was easier than learning from my books, and I truly enjoyed it. I wish I could use it every day since it’s so great.

At the school named for the Brazilian philosopher and educator Paulo Freire, the concept is being applied for the first time. But Vini Jr. and his group plan to expand it next year. This is only the start.