“We believe that every human being deserves love, respect, and a chance to live a dignified life.”
The Da Terra Brasil Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting and improving the lives of the poor and physically disabled in Brazil. We have our roots ingrained to a labor of love of one very caring couple. Armando Rodrigues de Moraes, a physician and passionate advocate for the poor, and his wife Célia Carvalho de Moraes, known as the Mother Teresa of Piranga, committed their lives to helping the underprivileged community of Piranga, the small town where they were born, and especially the Lar Dos Velhinhos (Home for the Elderly) and its residents.
The Da Terra Brasil Foundation has its roots as a labor of love for one caring couple. Armando Rodrigues de Moraes, a physician and passionate advocate for the poor, and his wife Célia Carvalho de Moraes, known as the Mother Teresa of Piranga, were committed throughout their lives to helping Lar Dos Velhinhos (Home for the Elderly) and its residents.
In 2010 their daughter, Maria Inês Moraes, was inspired to continue their work, and established the Da Terra Brasil Foundation. In 2013, the New York-based Foundation received 501(c)(3) status. While focusing on development in the U.S., Maria’s strong ties to her homeland and solid partnerships with Brazilian organizations result in programs that touch people’s lives.
Maria Inês Moraes was born in Piranga, a small town in the South East of the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. She moved to Itauna, Minas Gerais, where she attended high school at Colegio Santana. Upon graduating from the University of Itauna, with a degree in Chemistry, Maria moved to New York City, where she met her husband and had two children.
With motherhood, Maria discovered a genuine love for young children’s learning and development, as well as deep caring for those less fortunate. After receiving a master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Bank Street Graduate School, Maria taught preschool children for many years. Maria is now dedicated to the growth of The Da Terra Brasil Foundation and the enriching the lives of the people it serves.