The project CresceRio is an initiative of MARE – Marine and Environmental Research Center who aims to transfer knowledge between science and the society as well as environmental education and awareness.Its main goals are: share knowledge on aquatic ecosystems, particularly urban streams; promote social responsibility regarding the preservation and restoration of urban streams and their ecosystems, working together with school communities of children, parents, teachers, and others.

In this project a team of scientists of MARE-UC will accompany a class of 25 students from the 1st grade of a public school of Agrupamento Eugénio de Castro, during 4 years, teaching them about the habitats and ecosystems of rivers and how to evaluate their health. The students will evaluate the condition of an urban stream, near their school, and will propose measures to improve its condition, and then present them to the city stakeholders.

One of the goals of the project is that children create a theatre play about their experience, as a way of promoting awareness among citizens about the importance of urban ecosystems. Marionet will coordinate the development of the play, working upon themes like river ecology and biodiversity, will accompany the students in several field trips and lab visits, will gather materials, and will promote discussions and improvisations with the participant students.

Marionet will also be responsible for the development of a documentary about the project, and for documenting the entire process of the children’s formation and participation.

The project started in 2018/19 and will go on until 2021/22. The theatre performance will take place in 2021. The documentary will be presented in 2022.