Taina | Brazil

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Living Hand to Mouth

Taina had taught English to school children for over a decade. In the pandemic, while working as a contract teacher, she was laid off. 

Her husband was also laid off, and the pandemic made finding work especially challenging. This was all the more true because their daughter suffered from asthma, and they were avoiding crowded, in-person workplaces (Brazil vaccinated citizens much later than in the US and the EU). 

The family lived hand to mouth, making difficult trade-offs between purchasing food or paying for other essential costs like transportation. They lived in a crowded multigenerational home with Taina’s mom until they could get back on their feet. “It was a difficult time,” Taina recalls.  

Taking stock of the situation, and recognizing that even if she could find another teaching job right away, their finances would only barely improve, Taina wanted a change. “I wanted to find a different career that would allow me to take better care of my family,” she told us. 

Discovering Generation

Taina had a private tutoring student who suggested she look into programming. With no income to spare, Taina was looking for free courses and stumbled upon Generation Brazil. “I saw that they were focused on people with low income who wanted to start a new career.” 

Her experience proved her right. “I was surprised by how caring the teachers and everybody there were. They were always very worried about our mental health, how we were dealing with the course. That’s what surprised me the most about it, the level of humanity in the program.” 

New Career, New Life 

After the course, Generation supported Taina and her classmates with a wealth of networking opportunities with employers, and Taina found her new job through one of those connections. 

She now works as a Junior Data Scientist at B3 – Brazil Stock Market. Her starting salary is much higher than what she earned before. 

Taina moved her family into their own big house. They bought a car. And she can now afford the small joys of going to the movies or the hair salon with a moment’s hesitation. Most crucially, her job comes with a generous benefits package that includes top-of-the-line healthcare for her family. Recently, her daughter needed to be hospitalized in the ICU due to her asthma, and Taina was able to take her to a high-end hospital to receive the best care. Had this happened while she was at her old job, “I don’t know what I would have done,” she told us. 

Overall, she says, “I am forever grateful for Generation. It was a truly life-changing experience!”