Good Practices / Projeto Academia

Projeto Academia


Organization that is implementing

Fundação Cidade de Lisboa e Associação Renovar a Mouraria



Level of


Target Group

Refugees and Asylum Seekers


Project Overview

Projeto Academia aims to contribute to the socio-educational development and integration of immigrant children in vulnerable situations and, more specifically:


a) empower educational communities to support the integration and socio-educational development of immigrant children;

b) increase the motivation and academic success of immigrant children, improving

communication skills in Portuguese and the personal and social development;

c) to raise awareness (students, volunteers and community) to the issues of interculturality and global citizenship, stimulating the exercise of an active citizenship.

Main Activities

Projeto Academia supports migrant and refugee children and youth in educational settings to learn the language and develop personal, social and academic skills, thus promoting their integration. The project intervenes in several schools in the city of Lisbon, and through a network of volunteer tutors it provides weekly support to migrant and refugee children and young people.

Based on the model of individualised tutoring, this project integrates 2 main axes of action: the promotion of academic success and education for citizenship.

Network of Tutors:

The objective of the Tutor Network activity is the creation and training of a group of volunteers to implement guardianship with immigrant children and young people in an educational context.


The goal of this activity is to provide individualized support through a network of volunteer tutors from the community to immigrant children and young people, in order to contribute to the improvement of communication in Portuguese, their socio-educational development and their integration in the educational context and in the community.

Capacitation of the educational community:

The objective of the activity ‘’ Capacitation of the educational community’’ is to promote among the strategic actors of school groupings, skills for:

a) intervention with immigrant children in vulnerable situations, in particular, pupils with poor command of the Portuguese language;

b) management of intercultural groups in line with the principles of Global Citizenship and Sustainable Development;

c) organisation and management of tutorials promoted by educational agents or community volunteers trained for the action – enhancing the application of Academia methodology with greater autonomy by the schools/territories.

Family Involvement:

The aim of the Family involvement activity is to inform, provide tools and promote the active participation of parents in the learning process of their children.

Workshops for interculturality:

The objectives of the activity Workshops for interculturalism are: to promote the socio-cultural integration of children in the school community and in the city; to develop personal and social skills; to stimulate language learning and to promote education for global citizenship (ECG).

More Information

How was the Project born?

Projeto Academia – Capacitar e Valorizar em Português was born in 2016 with the BIP/ZIP Energy, with the major objective of contributing to the socio-educational development and integration of migrant students in the municipality of Lisbon.


This project is a pillar of the Academia CV – Capacitar e Valorizar, created in 2015 by Fundação Cidade de Lisboa, with a view to working towards the psychosocial, academic and civic development of children in situations of greater vulnerability. Based on the individualized tutoring model and with the support of skills volunteering, this project integrates 2 main areas of action: the promotion of academic success and education for citizenship.


The first year of intervention in schools and the contact with the educational community revealed the need for specific support to migrant children in learning Portuguese. Thus, the following year, Academia was born, with a specific orientation towards this public and the learning of the language.


After two years of working in schools in the São João de Brito neighbourhood in Lisbon, Associação Renovar a Mouraria joined this mission of Supporting and Integrating migrant children and youngsters and the project is extended to other neighbourhoods in the city – Alfama, Castelo, Penha de França, São Vicente, Campolide, Campo de Ourique and Estrela.


Elements that facilitated the implementation

At national level


Despacho n.º 2044/2022, which establishes rules to ensure support to students whose mother tongue is not Portuguese.


Decreto-lei no. 54/2018, of 6 July that establishes the principles and standards that ensure inclusion, as a process that aims to respond to the diversity of needs and potentialities of all and each of the students, through increased participation in learning processes and in the life of the educational community.


Portaria no. 223-A/2018, of 3 August, which regulates the educational offers in basic education foreseen in no. 2 of article 7 of Decree-Law no. 55/2018, of 6 July.


Portaria no. 226-A/2018, of August 7, which regulates the scientific-humanistic courses, referred to in paragraph a) of no. 4 of article 7 of Decree-Law no. 55/2018, of July 6.


Portaria no. 183/2020 of 5 August, which creates the Portuguese as a Host Language courses, as well as the rules regarding their organisation, functioning and certification.


At the local level


The Lisbon Municipality Plan for the Integration of Migrants

Challenges in the implementation

1. Involvement and commitment of the network of volunteer tutors

Continuous and individualised follow-up, constant communication, compulsory initial training (16h)

2. Involvement and awareness of the school teaching staff

Training and capacity building actions, initial meetings and during the school year with the project team, fostering articulation between volunteer tutors and teachers/educators.

3. Project sustainability in educational contexts

Training and capacity-building of strategic actors (volunteers, teachers, educators, others), creation of the Academia Pedagogical Kit, involvement and awareness of the heads of the groupings and coordinators of the schools targeted for intervention.

Impact on refugees or local community lives?












Creation of schools for all, which value cultural diversity

Teachers, educators and volunteers better able to integrate immigrant and refugee children – degree of satisfaction of the educational communities with the project higher than 90%.

Increased competences of students – after the intervention of one school year, an average increase of more than 30% in personal, social, academic and communication competences in Portuguese

Is this project/program replicable and/or scalable?

With each edition the methodologies improve, the activities enrich and the project grows in partners and ambition. Together we want to reach further, in the territories, in the number of beneficiary educational communities and in the intervention model – because we believe and we see the difference! The incentive to continue comes from the children, young people and teachers with whom we work. Support comes from our network of volunteers and partners.


The Academia Pedagogical Kit is a support tool for the implementation of the Academia methodology in educational contexts, to promote the integration of children and young people in the school community, through the acquisition of several skills, focusing on communication in Portuguese. This Kit intends to make the implementation of the proposed methodology autonomous, so that it may be used by School Groups and other social intervention entities of local scope. As a complement to this tool, and for a supported and sustained intervention, we recommend the training and qualification of the educational agents, among them volunteer tutors, primary school teachers and kindergarten teachers.

This training may be provided by the entities promoting the methodology, the City of Lisbon Foundation and the Associação Renovar a Mouraria, if the conditions for an effective collaboration are met. The training for the network of tutors, consisting of 16 hours, is certified (see point 5.2.1.c). The training for the teaching staff is accredited and 3 Short Term Actions (SLA) are available. Each LCA comprises 5 hours of training, totalling 15 hours. The themes of the SCA’s are the following: Citizenship and Interculturality, Communication and Learning, Tutoring for Socio-educational Development. Promoting training for teachers and other educational agents is the way to implement the methodology in a more autonomous way, ensuring that these strategic actors strengthen their capacity to intervene in multicultural classes, with immigrant pupils with a poor command of the Portuguese language, with a view to their social, cultural and academic integration. Teachers who are better prepared to apply methodologies leading to the promotion of interculturality and intercultural education will contribute to the integration of immigrant children, but also to the enrichment of the whole school community, in a perspective of plural learning, good coexistence, respect and mutual appreciation. The application of these methodologies leads to the development of a global citizenship, in favour of a fairer, more peaceful and sustainable world.