Key achievement

Empowering marginalized citizens for 20 years nationwide

Associação CAIS

Network Member

The CAIS Association was founded on 20th May 1994 to support people suffering extreme poverty and social exclusion, notably those who are homeless, to regain independence and control of their lives.


CAIS Association


Access to human rights has, since its inception, been the key to promote and protect the autonomy of those people who have been marginalized from active participation in Portuguese society. With 20 years of experience, CAIS distinguishes itself today through a unique and pioneering mission of inclusion and intervention.


Futebol de Rua is the football based program/project done by CAIS Association. The project started in 2004 with a single participation in the Homeless World Cup annual event and evolved into a nationwide project. CAIS is member of Street Football World Network since 2005.


We divide the project in two parts:


Access to Sport


Futebol de Rua National Tournament: National, inclusive, tournament divided in 3 stages: 


First stage is made of local tournaments, promoted by befriended organisation over the country (except Lisbon and Porto, in these two we do the local tournaments ourselves) that bring together the local organizations, each winner from the local tournaments later on represents the district in the Grand Final of the National Tournament;


Second stage is the Grand Final of the National Tournament and that bring together each district winner for a 5 day event filled with games but also cultural, recreational activities and workshops that connect with the initiatives we run in the field of development of personal and social skills during the year;


Third stage is the participation in international competitions, including The Homeless World Cup annual event. The teams that participate in the international competitions also do a training camp for preparation. The agenda for training camp is, once again, filled with cultural, social activities and workshops.


Every year the national tournament reaches between 900 to 1000 participants and around 100 social workers and coaches all over the country and the Grand Final of the National Tournament has around 200 participants.


Inclusion through sports 


CAIS runs 2 initiatives:


The "move sessions", integrated in the MOVE project, started has an occupational activity for our clients and turned, in 2013, in an activity for the clients of all organizations in the Lisbon district. We deliver, 3 times a week, football trained sessions together with social skills sessions for all the participants. The goal is obviously to work and promote personal and social skills in informal environment.


The "move yourself, make it happen", in partnership with the National Plan for Ethic in Sports and the Youth in Action Program, it’s a newly initiative that aims to empower the professionals (social workers and coaches) and develop personal and social skills with the participants. Its divided in 3 stages:


First stage will have 2 different workshops, one for professionals and one for participants. Second stage will be done locally, all over the country and will consist in workshops delivered to the professionals. Third stage will be done locally, all over the country, through our local partners and consists in workshops, for the participants at the same time then the local tournaments for the 2014 National Tournament.


All the participating organizations should promote regular football training sessions together with other occupational, educational and employment activities and personal and social skills training sessions. Only this way is possible to guarantee that the participation is not isolated but actually integrated in the life change and that the use of football actually promotes empowerment.

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Associação CAIS
Gonçalo Santos

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