The mission of the Estrela Dalva Program is to provide economically underprivileged, academically gifted students with a school and extracurricular education that allows them to reach the highest levels of specialization that are commensurate with their potential and become adults who are morally, cognitively and culturally capable of participate as real citizens in a productive way in the life of their communities and the country.
When talent manifests itself in low-income children and youth and is not recognized by the educational system, it becomes personal risk and social risk.
The gifted youngster is often expelled from the educational system by boredom or by opposing teachers. On leaving the system, by having capacity far above that of his peers, he is easily seduced by the challenge of marginal life.
The most capable are often co-opted by organized crime: in addition to seducing the life of adventure, there is the possibility of gaining unattainable sums on the paths of social conformity and thereby contributing to their own and family status and livelihood.