Brazil Social Project Visits 2022

What makes your heart sing?

I learn a great quote from the late speaker and author Wayne Dyer: “Don’t die with your music in you.”

Do you have an activity, passion, or whatever you want to call it that fulfills your heart? Something you do because it makes you smile inside out. If you do, keep playing this music any chance you have.

Maybe you can say: “Gustavo, I don’t have one.” Yes, you do! Perhaps you haven’t found it yet, or you haven’t paid enough attention to how a particular activity makes you feel, but you do!

Every human being, including you, has “music” inside, talent, or some type of calling. Your job is to discover and play this music.

In my case, nothing satisfies me more than acting on my life’s purpose of inspiring, impacting, and improving lives. Of course, I can do it through GD Jiu-Jitsu Academy, the AZBJJ League, Podcasts, Coaching, and so forth; however, nonprofit activities are what make my heart sing.

The Universe aligns people with similar missions and purposes. I am very blessed to have met incredible leaders/social workers during my journey and to be able to support them personally or through the 501 c3 nonprofit organization Jiu-Jitsu Tribe, which I co-founded in 2010.

During my latest trip back home, I had to opportunity to meet three more social projects in a small town called Itacaré in Bahia, located in the northeast of Brazil. Every time I visit projects like these, they blow me away with how these leaders get to “play their music” in poor conditions, with no financial compensation and a huge smile. Automatically, seeing how excited those kids and young adults make my heart sing.

My wife, Charissa, had the opportunity to travel and visit the projects with me for the first time. During the first visit to the church Bola de Neve, she was curious: “Why do some kids train without the gi?”

I answered: “Because they don’t have one, and there is NO WAY their parents would be able to afford it.” During the second visit to the “Meninos da Vila project,” it started raining hard. We needed to consistently dry the mats so the kids didn’t slip, which didn’t seem to bother them at all; it was part of their reality.

We were in a sketchy neighborhood where drug dealers ran the area on our final visit. If it wasn’t for projects like “Casa do Conto,” the kids would never have been exposed to martial arts, dance, and art.

It was a good wake-up call for her about how amazing she has been in the United States and to be able to train in an excellent facility.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of projects like these spread out through Brazil. We have been consistently helping projects for over a decade. But unfortunately, there is so much that Jiu-Jitsu Tribe or I can do, and we always need extra support.

We will help these projects with some equipment and improvements to their facilities as well. Suppose you would like to be a part of this mission of assisting their incredible leaders in keeping playing their music and continue to. In that case, you can donate through the site

Maybe participating in nonprofit activities is the type of music, maybe not, but regardless seeing the look of those kids from unprivileged communities have fun and literally change their lives is PRICELESS.


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