At the first evening of the Connect Conference Edgard will bring us all together for … a surpise. He will inspire us, bring us all into action and……. challenge us! Edgard will take us on a journey to the playful activities of “cooperative games”. We will discover how to live and play with each other instead of against each other at school, family, community and society. It’s an invitation to learn, experience, laugh, have a lot of fun, shine and be surprised by the abilities you and the other participants have to really make a difference in this world!
At 6’7”, Edgard Gouveia, Jr. towers over most people. An early career in professional volleyball in Brazil, his native country, was soon exchanged for training at the University of Santos in Architecture and Urban Planning. Upon graduation, he and his colleagues co-founded the Elos Foundation, an architectural firm dedicated to community activism. Pursuing their social mandate, they founded the Warriors Without Weapons program in 2000, a bi-annual five week training for young entrepreneurs to learn the tools of effective collaboration through supporting communities to identify and implement their own dreams, resources and powers without relying on outside sources of funding. The strength of this methodology soon led Edgard and his colleagues to develop the Oasis Games, a three- to ten-day activism model that uses the same tools in short term projects, including catastrophic situations. Edgard has been active internationally in teaching this process of this playful social methodology for the past fifteen years, giving presentations at schools and universities and leading seminars on the streets world wide. Hundreds of Oasis games have now been played on four continents. For the past three years, Edgard has been actively engaged in the creation of a new project, PlayTheCall, a Global Game that merges the real and the virtual world to engage and connect young people around the world in local community activism projects. Drawing upon the passion of youth to use computer technology and to become engaged in their communnities in play, PlayTheCall offers to players a series of hero missions to be accomplished in the real world. Through the power of social networking, PlayTheCall aims to activate 2 billion people around the world to save the planet through projects that serve the community, the region and the world, and build ever-larger networks of collaboration across the globe. The Beta 1 test version of PlayTheCall was created and launched Dec. 21, 2012 by an all-volunteer team of young experts, attracting the attention of educators and youth leaders around the world. The Beta 2 version will be launched in Dec. 2013. The game is already being played in communities in Brazil, the USA, India and Europe.
Edgard continues to travel and lecture widely to spread the awareness of the Global Game “PlayTheCall” and teach the tools of “playing to save the world” in a way that is fast, free, fun, friendly —- and fantastic. He is both an Ashoka Fellow and a Berkana Fellow. Edgard lectures and leads cooperative games at schools, universities, businesses and community organizations around the world.