Published: October 13, 2020
Published: October 13, 2020

A Breath of Fresh ‘Air Pure’ and Soothing Color in Portugal

Our first COLORFUL COMMUNTIES® project in early 2020 was a huge success, thanks to the creativity and organization of Sandra Reis Santos, PPG communication specialist at our site in Sacavém, Portugal. She is proud that the project in January gave valuable help to those deserving members of her community.

Sandra was lucky this project was one of the first and one of the last ones we could do before all the lockdowns. Now, in October, we are glad that we were able to look back at the project in Portugal with a sense of accomplishment, while slowly restarting our Colorful Communities initiative with strict hygiene protocols in place.

Last year, Sandra led the team at the ART (Associação De Respostas Terapêuticas) project, a Castro Verde-based non-profit organization helping vulnerable adolescents.

This kind of project gives me extra motivation in my job because we can use what we have, our products, to do something good, and that’s amazing.

The Closest Thing to a Home

This year’s partner was Associação Protectora da Criança (APC), an orphanage for kids aged 5 to 16, based in Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal, that welcomes children who cannot live at home with their parents and face familial, economic, emotional, or social issues.

APC is where these children have a family that takes care of them and gives them the closest thing they have to a home.

Unfortunately, the orphanage does not have much funding but they do the best they can with what they have. The rooms’ walls were not in great shape. In addition, the playground was ruined, so the kids had nowhere to play – which forms an important part of any child’s life. The whole space simply needed cleaning up and, equally importantly, cheering up.

APC is where these children have a family that takes care of them and gives them the closest thing they have to a home.

It was obvious to Sandra that we had the perfect products and people to help and, after choosing the paints, colors, and accessories with her team, she then gathered all the materials.

Restoring Quality – From Air to Lives

Sandra and her team of 50 volunteers dedicated two days to turning this space into a lively and joyful place that would help the children create happy memories despite their difficult situations.

She chose our new product, DYRUP® Air Pure, which is a revolutionary bio-based paint that purifies the air for seven years from its application. The team needed about 800 liters (211 gallons) to paint all the bedrooms, the small laundry house, and the playground walls.

The fact that we had the new Dyrup Air Pure, which improved the quality of the air they were going to breathe, was really the right product at the right time.

Using Air Pure gave our volunteers the opportunity to improve the quality of the air as well as the quality of the children’s lives. Even the national television was interested in what they were doing, and thanks to the coverage of APC’s cause and difficulties, the institution received fresh donations from other companies!

To finish off, a brand-new age-appropriate playground was installed. Local artist, Catarina Glam, created a beautiful three-dimensional elephant painting using our outdoor paints and wood. The cheerful interior colors of rose and blue create welcoming spaces for the children to live in (while keeping them safe), and the playground invites them to be kids for a while.

Sandra Is All About Learning from Results

When she’s not making a direct impact on the lives of local children, Sandra’s doing the same for us as our communication specialist. Responsible for all digital initiatives and channels of our Dyrup, BONDEX® and CHROMATIC® brands in Portugal, she manages three websites, all of our social media, and the overall communication of the brand. She loves to explore how customers react to and engage with PPG content.

It’s a great way to learn what people want from us. By analyzing the results, we can understand what our customers need.

Seeing the change from January in retrospect has only amplified how #PPGProud Sandra is of the results of the project.

Back at the beginning of the year, the team had no idea how much impact a freshly clean, sterile interior and newly installed playground would make in the months to come.

We couldn't ask for more. The fact that PPG came here to make this transformation happen… it has left us speechless. It came at the right time and made the lockdown so much more enjoyable.
Ana Martins, Director of Associação Protetora da Criança