Our work has made a considerable difference in helping to alleviate poverty and improve the lives of Mozambicans today and for generations to come. Many of our initiatives and approaches can be replicated across Africa or used in other emerging nations.

We have also facilitated profound personal transformation for the people from the West who have participated in our immersion experiences or come alongside us to partner on our initiatives. The ripple effect of CouldYou? through the transformation of communities and individuals is immeasurable.

Education

Through our Educate Mozambique initiative, we have an unprecedented opportunity to impact every child in Mozambique by transforming the educational system in partnership with Mozambique’s Former President, Joaquim Chissano, and Mackenzie Presbyterian University in Brazil. Over the next 20 years, Educate Mozambique could impact 16.7 million school-aged children, as 62% of the population of Mozambique is between the ages of 5 and 25.  As a result of the initiative:

  • Literacy rates are projected to increase to 98%
  • 85% of people are projected to procure higher paying jobs
  • An entire generation of youth will be transformed and ready to lead their country to continued economic growth

In addition, the educational system can be replicated in other African countries, making the impact truly continent-wide.

As part of our education initiative, CouldYou? is partnering with OurStories to produce and distribute a series of children’s books native to Mozambique, sharing one story from each province. This will allow the next generation to learn and grow with books that reflect and celebrate their culture. It is estimated that 9,000 students and parents will read the 850 Mr. Rabbit and the Well books that have been distributed to date. Another 1,500 books will be distributed in early 2017, estimated to reach about 15,000 people. Ultimately, CouldYou? wants to make multiple culturally relevant children’s books available to every child in the country.

Water

Our water initiative has given 1,500 people in Gumbane Village access to clean water for drinking, cooking and washing. This improves the quality of health within the village and gives people time back for more valuable activities, especially girls and women. In addition, two people are employed by a new water company CouldYou? created to sustain the water solution.

Health

CouldYou? brought together the right partners in Mozambique, including the Chissano Foundation and Pathfinder International, with support from the Ministries of Health and Education, to initiate a study on the acceptability and feasibility of menstrual cups as solution for girls. When approved, the study will be conducted throughout 2017 with 1,000 girls in both urban and rural environments. The use of menstrual cups has the potential to be a life-changing solution for all girls in Mozambique because it is highly effective from an economic and environmental perspective, and will reduce preventable health issues and ensure that girls do not miss a day of school due to menstruation. It will also contribute to girl empowerment, leading to a much greater quality of life and increased productivity of communities.

Entrepreneurship

CouldYou? is the proud owner of a small water company in Mozambique that not only employs two people from the community but also uses the profits to expand our work in country and potentially to help start another company to fabricate bricks.

CouldYou? connects, advises and facilitates conversations on an ongoing basis to explore ways to support local entrepreneurs and investment in entrepreneurship.

Personal Transformation

CouldYou? has touched many lives through the immersion experience as well as the opportunities we provide for participants to move into action by utilizing their skills to impact social change. Most participants experience a personal transformation—some are deeply transformed in a way that changes the trajectory of their lives, while others just adopt a slightly different world view and priorities—but everyone is changed somehow in the process.

CouldYou? Alumni In Action

CouldYou? wants individuals to impact poverty in a personal, concrete way. Alleviating poverty is not just about providing basic physical necessities, but filling gaps wherever opportunities present themselves. Here are a few examples of what individuals who have gone through the CouldYou? experience are saying and how they have translated their powerful experience in Africa into action within their specific field of interest.

Whynde Kuehn

“I have had the honor to spend a significant amount of time with Christine and CouldYou? first as a CouldYou? trip participant and then as a colleague and partner through the many CouldYou? related projects we have worked on together since then.  I have personally experienced transformation after my CouldYou? experience.  It led me to begin working at my corporate job for nine months and volunteering to alleviate poverty in various ways for the other three. I also started a new social business, Metanoia Global (metanoiaglobal.com), which helps social entrepreneurs and initiatives to start, scale, replicate and sustain, leveraging a strong foundation of skills from the business world, and proving that both profit and purpose can co-exist.”

Whynde has provided hundreds of thousands of dollars of pro-bono work consulting African leaders and organizations for business transformation.

Jan MacLatchie

Jan is a Brand Strategist in NYC and says “I’m confident that this shift is permanent. I’ve noticed my personal timeline is now divided in two. There’s ‘before CouldYou?’ and ‘after CouldYou?’ The best way to say it is that this way of being was always in me, I just didn’t know how to access it, and having gotten there, I can’t imagine ever having been any other way.”

Jan has leveraged her clients to partner with local artisans to see them become sustainable.

April Nickell

After participating on a CouldYou? trip to Mozambique in 2013, Literacy consultant April Nickell came home passionate about producing traditional Mozambican children’s books in an effort to grow a generation of proficient readers and writers. Presently there is a serious lack of children’s books for Africans by Africans, yet there is a rich and thriving tradition of oral storytelling. OurStories seeks to cultivate these culturally relevant tales and translate them in collaboration with African storytellers into books that will allow children to better relate to their own history and culture. It is a key mission of OurStories to instill cultural pride and ownership in readers and storytellers alike, creating scaffolds for African storytellers and writers to create more literature.

Mr. Rabbit and the Well is the first in a series of traditional stories that were collected in Mozambique and are being adapted into dynamic children’s books designed by literacy specialists and experienced designers. It is estimated that 9,000 students and parents will read the 850 Mr. Rabbit and the Well books that have been distributed to date. Another 1,500 books will be distributed in early 2017, estimated to reach about 15,000 people.

Tracey Sonneborn 

Tracey Sonneborn is a fine artist from the US (www.traceysonneborn.com) who came to Africa with CouldYou? in order to be introduced to some of the best organizations working with orphan and vulnerable children. Tracey will be painting portraits which will be auctioned off at galas where 100% of the proceeds will benefit the organizations work.


“My experience with CouldYou? has been amazing. Christine is an inspiring woman who’s lived a life of self-sacrifice and is committed to helping and serving the poorest communities in Mozambique. She is an incredible networker and connected me with numerous heads of orphan care organizations and highly influential leaders in both South Africa and Mozambique. She’s been an excellent guide as we’ve worked together in my pursuit to take The Orphan Portrait Project to Africa. The experience and outcome of my trip to Africa was and is beyond expectation, leaving me with numerous opportunities to move forward with. I am so grateful for her work to help me bring this project to fruition and look forward to a continued partnership. If your desire is to use your talent, time and resources to make a difference in lives of the people in Mozambique, I highly recommend CouldYou? and Christine.”

“I believe, together with CouldYou?, we can be a beacon of light to the continent.”

– Joaquim Chissano, Former President of Mozambique