Alyeriz Zeledón, Artists for Soup’s Small Enterprise and Finance Consultant, remembers fondly the trees that grew in Corozo during her childhood. “I have many memories of long walks under the shade of the trees and over the river where I could find guava, orange or mango trees,” she says. But as the community grew, people cut down the trees for fuel and lumber, damaging the water table, the Calico River, and the air quality.
In addition to 1,000 native tree seedlings and reforestation materials, the Pollination Project and Artists for Soup have provided 380 fruit trees for 48 families, including biointensive family garden participants.
Artists for Soup is committed to reforestation because it improves access to fresh water needed for nutrition and gardening initiatives, while mitigating the effects of climate change. When possible, Artist for Soup plants nutritional trees to provide additional sources of food while supporting reforestation efforts.
During summer 2018, the Corozo community planted 1,000 trees near the city’s water source and removed trash from the Calico River. The nearby community of San Dionisio participated in the river clean-up and reforestation efforts; in return, the Corozo community will help with a river clean-up and reforestation initiative in their region.
Zeledón also coordinates the creation and distribution of seed balls to throw in deforested areas as part of a youth initiative to engage teens in projects that resist climate change. These seeds balls are an inexpensive and simple way to start reforestation in a large area.