Batoto Yetu Portugal – Cultural and Youth Association (BYP) is a non-profit cultural association founded in 1996 with the support of the Oeiras City Council and the Luso-American Foundation for Development. It is a public entity and recognized by the High Commissioner for Migrations (ACM) as an Immigrant Association.
Its main target are children and young people interested in African culture who come from underprivileged neighborhoods. The association’s philosophy is based on the belief that, regardless of each person’s socioeconomic conditions, learning about and valuing their cultural roots is an essential factor to consolidate their self-esteem and sense of belonging.
By working in the non-formal education field, and especially on social inclusion through the arts and community initiatives that promote an active citizenship, the association helps these children and young people to become confident and responsible leaders in the future who contribute to a more intercultural, cosmopolitan and tolerant country.
Since 1996, Batoto Yetu, which means “our children” in Swahili, helped to include through the arts some 1400 dancers and musicians, putting on over 450 shows in national and international stages (Angola, Cabo Verde, Spain, USA, Italy, UK, Senegal) as well as on television shows.
It currently has 907 members, most of which are children, young people and their families who participate in the association’s various activities.