Rio de Janeiro, January 18, 2019 – The City of Rio de Janeiro and UN-Habitat have joined hands to improve living conditions for the poorest of the poor in the largest favelas (slums) of Rio. Implemented in collaboration with the Instituto Municipal de Urbanismo Pereira Passos – IPP over a two-year period, the project will provide a specific category of Rio’s population (slum dwellers) with access to public services that are currently unavailable or unaffordable for them.

Launched in the presence of the Mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Marcelo Crivella, this initiative will tackle urban poverty in large favelas of the city of Rio de Janeiro by identifying and providing adequate support to the most vulnerable slum dwellers. It is projected to reach approximately 450,000 people living in ten of the largest and most marginalized favelas of Rio.

Alain Grimard of the UN-Habitat Regional Office in Rio observed that the project aims to “reduce urban poverty and spatial segregation which is still a reality for slum dwellers of in the big city of Rio de Janeiro. This initiative endeavours to reach those who are furthest behind first, to enshrine the right to the city for every citizen”, he said.

The principle of leaving no one behind underpins the 2030 Agenda wherein UN Member States have committed to leaving no one behind in implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  To achieve this, vulnerable populations such as slum dwellers must be reached by specific policies and concrete actions for everyone to enjoy inclusive and sustainable economic growth and social progress.  Leaving no one behind requires transformation of deeply rooted economic, social and political systems as well as governance structures, from the local to global levels.

The on-going partnership between UN-Habitat and the Municipality of Rio spans more than two decades.  In addition to hosting the UN-Habitat Regional Office since 1997, Rio de Janeiro has supported similar urban projects to the tune of over USD 12 million.