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Stephen Grant: #SouMinasGerais: The Arts Benefit Mining Tragedy Victims in Brazil

2015-12-23-1450866754-1601775-IMG_0548.JPG Singer Mariana Aydar at the#SouMinasGerais charity event. Photo by Stephen J. Grant.

Artists in Brazil are taking action to raise funds for recovery of the Bento Rodrigues district of Mariana in Minas Gerais, Brazil, after a dam burst at an iron ore mine. The mining tragedy took the lives of over a dozen of people and damaged the entire Doce River ecosystem. According to several reports, this catastrophe is the worst environmental disaster in Brazil and one of the top 5 in the world.

The #SouMinasGerais Collective, which includes a group of record labels and arts organizations, planned a benefit concert in São Paulo, led by notable Brazilian musicians Maria Gadu, Tulipa Ruiz and Mariana Aydar. Additional performers included, Ana Cañas, Emicida, Nando Reis, Marina Lima, Fafá de Belém, Paulo Miklos, and Ney Matogrosso, who all stood in solidarity with the victims. Some of São Paulo’s favorite street artists such as Paulo Ito, Ju Violeta, Magrela Mag and many others joined in for the cause, creating exclusive paintings with proceeds adding towards the fundraising.

Check out highlights from the event and follow the links below to learn more or to discover ways to show your support.

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This event was the second for the #SouMinasGerais Collective and one of many gatherings around the country. Learn more about #SouMinasGerais and their efforts, or show your support online ( Donations will go to a charity fund managed by SITAWI Finance of Good and coordinated by Greenpeace.

Additional Links:

  • If you are in São Paulo, please help by donating water. More info on pick up stations via Facebook:
  • Por que Voluntários Estão Fazendo o Trabalho da Samarco na Crise em Governador Valadares? (VICE Brasil)
  • Rio Doce: Brasil’s Worst Environmental Disaster (Brasil Wire)
  • Judge blocks Brazilian assets of Vale, BHP after dam burst (
  • Arsenic and mercury found in river days after Brazil dam burst (Guardian)
  • A version of this story first appeared on