Employee Story

How Alzira is able to send her kids to school by planting thousands of trees

Alzira collecting mangrove propagules

Alzira Arão Cossa struggled to find work to provide for her children. As a single mother of four, she spent her days tending other people's gardens, earning less than one dollar per day. "Every morning, I woke up worried and didn't know where to find food for us," Alzira recounted. She planted crops on her small plot of land and continued looking for a more consistent way to provide for her family.

When our Mozambique team was conducting socioeconomic impact surveys in the community, our local site leader, Elisabeth, saw the need that Alzira was in and, on the spot, offered her a job as a planter. Working with us is the first official job Alzira has had. She told us, "it was hard for me to believe that it was possible to have a consistent income because I was suffering so much." Even when she and her team face searing drought, torrential downpours, and unpredictable wildlife, Alzira starts each day counting seeds and planting them until she reaches her daily goal. With the income she earns, Alzira has started attending school with her children to learn alongside them. She wakes up each day eager to go to work, knowing she no longer has to worry about how she will find food for her family.

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