This is the second part of my interview with Tarek ‘Laranja’, a socially engaged Capoeira teacher from Syria. Tarek’s newest project ‘Bidna Capoeira’ – “We want Capoeira!” in English – aims to inspire teachers from around the world to take action in areas of conflict and social difficulties through Capoeira programmes. ‘Laranja’ also shares his motivations and the shortcomings of such actions.
Tarek “Laranja” Alsaleh was the first practitioner to introduce Caopeira in Syria. Different from many enthralled young teachers who chose to ‘train just for fun’, Tarek believes that helping children and youth to find joy in their lives is no longer a choice, but an obligation. He coordinates various different projects utilising Capoeira as a socio-educative instrument in different locations. Through CapoeirArab, he launched the “Free for Kids project”, a programme assisting over 500 Iraqi/Palestinian refugees and children in areas of extreme social conditions. Currently Tarek is working to launch ‘Bidna Capoeira’ a NGO that aims ‘to bring capoeira to people in difficult situations around the world’, as he puts it. This is the first part of my interview with Tarek.
“You wanna learn about Brazilian history without going through the books, you can just listen to the music and you’ll understand everything…”