Maria lucia carr Gulassa

Ashoka Fellow
São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
Fellow Since 1989


This profile was prepared when Maria lucia carr Gulassa was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1989.
The New Idea
Over the years of observation and experimentation, Maria Lucia gradually proved that those who came to rest in the government's biggest institution for abandoned infants were not genetically damaged or inferior. Instead the orderly, cautious ways of the institution were the chief causes of both physical and mental damage.She made this clear with results, including a sharp reduction in the death rate. These results in turn reflected her success in developing a wide array of techniques that even the overloaded staff of her institution could welcome. Almost as much of her invention, in fact, is in the appropriateness of her prescriptions to the needs of those working in these institutions as it is in the forms of care.
Having developed this successful set of techniques, Maria Lucia is now opening a new phase in her work -- getting her approach into the hands of thousands of those caring for poor children in institutions. Typically, she's poured herself into finding the most effective ways of doing so. These include teaching techniques on the one hand and substantive concern for such issues as the caregiver's role as educator and stress management as well as specific technical coverage. After several year's development and increasing, measured impact, she's ready to spread her work on a bigger scale.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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