Cannes Lions

Design meets Favela

GRECO DESIGN, Belo horizonte / FA.VELA / 2019

Presentation Image
Case Film






Slums (favelas) in Brazil are a consequence of extremely inequal wealth distribution and lack of affordable housing.

In the favelas of Belo Horizonte, which is one of the largest Brazilian cities and has the third largest in-town favela, you need to be in the Corre to overcome the statistics.

Fa.vela is the first slum-based business accelerator in Brazil, working in the development of an entrepreneurial, technological and innovative ecosystem for lower income communities, through business acceleration programs and projects focusing on socio-environmental and economic impact.

The Design Meets Favela project, which began in 2016 with the objective of creating visual identity projects for these entrepreneurs, facilitated the birth and growth of their brands. 90 companies have participated in the project and had their logos created by the city’s best designers who worked pro bono.


In the past three years we have done 90 brands for the companies supported by Fa.vela. To make this happen, we went down into the corre and brought to life Jumara’s Hair salon, Paulo’s music school, Luci’s café, Will’s hidroponics, Camila’s school, as well as 85 more. Literally. To do that, we gathered the city’s top designers to create logos for all of the ninety Fa.vela accelerated brands. And all the designers came on board pro bono.

Since we truly believe that good design makes a difference in people’s lives and is capable of boosting social changes, we made João’s Fa.vela corre into our personal corre.

Only when they see their logo born do they feel that their company is truly alive.


The entire logo creation process was collaborative. The entrepreneurs from the favela weren’t considered merely clients but as co-authors of their logos. It is important to point out here that the symbolic and visual repertory from the favela is very different than what we are used to seeing in central areas of the city.

It wasn`t our intention to apply inappropriate visual aesthetics in the poor favela environment which would have seemed strange and distant to the owners of these logos. It was fundamentally important for these people to feel like part of what was being born. For logo distribution, simple materials were chosen and many times characteristic Brazilian jury-rigging was utilized in the design solutions. The design here has much more to do with the realization and ownership of dreams than the final repeated production finishing. The essence of design is to transform the world around it.


The Project owes its success to its continuity. We are in the fourth full year of the project´s execution and more and more people are being affected. The most important result has been bringing companies into reality in an infértile enviroment for the development of new oportunities.

Thousand`s of people have already been directly impacted considering only the members of each family and the number of jobs created.