Former Secretary of State for Tourism Rita Marques to chair Livraria Lello Foundation

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Former Secretary of State for Tourism Rita Marques will chair the Livraria Lello Foundation, presented today on the bookshop’s 118th anniversary and which, with a budget of 500,000 euros, aims to enable “people to read the world”.

On December 2, 2023, the former Secretary of State left the Socialist government headed by António Costa and took up a management position at The Fladgate Partnership group, which owns the Wow company, with responsibilities in the hotels and tourism division.

In a statement, Livraria Lello said today that Rita Marques, who is also a consultant and lecturer at Porto Business School, will chair the Livraria Lello Foundation.

“The will of this foundation is to broaden the spectrum to new audiences, encouraging civic participation in building a more balanced and prosperous society,” said Rita Marques, quoted in the statement.

The foundation, presented as part of the 118th anniversary of Livraria Lello, will have the vice-chancellor of the University of Porto, Fátima Vieira, the cardinal of Setúbal, Américo Aguiar, and the former president of Turismo de Portugal, Luís Araújo, on its board of trustees.

With a budget of 500,000 euros, the Livraria Lello Foundation will have the “bold mission of empowering people to read the world, promoting reading as a lever for social prosperity”.

With the promotion of books and knowledge as its priorities, the foundation’s “first major challenge” is the opening in June of the Leça do Balio Monastery in Matosinhos, the result of an investment of around two million euros in the first phase of the requalification project.

The aim is to transform the monastery, which has been classified as a National Monument since June 1910 and represents the first headquarters of the Order of the Hospital in Portugal, “into a cultural gravitas, with exhibitions, conferences and various events”.

Alongside the monastery, the foundation intends to develop a cultural itinerary along the Portuguese Way of St. James, with several artistic residencies planned, including an international meeting of architecture students “to address environmental and urban challenges along the coast”.

At the same time, a project is planned with young people at risk of exclusion, “using art as a means for a spiritual and personal journey and, as a result, eliminating school failure and dropout”.

These projects will involve an investment of 200,000 euros.

Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi

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