Blanca Rosales – Byran/College Station HFH

Like many Guatemalan families, for Blanca and her two sons, Edgar and Jorge, the dream of owning a safe space to call home was far from being fulfilled.  

They have lived in Santa Cruz, El Quiché for a many years. Blanca works in the fields, while Edgar and Jorge work as mason’s helpers.  

Their old house was built with corrugated metal sheets and dirt floor, which caused them several problems, especially during rainy season, as the water would leak into the house and get everything wet, in addition to affecting their health. 

Thanks to the support of Bryan/College Station HFH, in coordination with Habitat Guatemala, the Rosales family is now living in their new Hybrid Home. Blanca and her sons are excited to finally have a safe place from their own, free of rainwater and dirt. “It’s something as simple as having a door. We didn’t have one, we only had a curtain. Now, we have our own doors, and it makes me very happy and grateful,” – says Blanca. 

In addition to their new Hybrid Home, the family also received a Healthy Home Kit that includes a smokeless stove, a water filter, a pila (water station) and a sanitary latrine to provide them with basic services and improve their living conditions. 

Blanca shares a message for the donors: “Every day, I thank God, and I pray that He sends many blessings to you and everyone who supported us to build our home. Thank you!” 

 

 

 

 

#Myhabitatexperience – Sayra López

My name is Sayra Nohemi Lopez, I am 30 years old, I have a degree in Social Work, single, my residence is located in Puerto Barrios, Izabal, Guatemala, I live with my mother and my brothers I consider myself a responsible person with extensive teamwork skills, creativity and service to others, as well as the ability to learn fast. I am the Educator of the Izabal affiliate. 

My work experience has been in the service of the population; which made me fall in love with my profession and allowed me to feel that I am being part of the development and wellbeing of communities and families so that they become resilient and obtain a better quality of life. 

I have been volunteering for 15 years with the Red Cross movement and that experience has helped me in my work.  

Why Habitat Guatemala?

When researching about the Organization I was attracted by its vision and mission and some testimonials I found; I felt that it adapted to the fact that I like to support families and work with volunteers, so I applied for the position and got selected to work with Habitat Guatemala and I am sure that it was my best choice, I have put my knowledge into practice and I have learned even more. 

Your Habitat Experience

 I started working for Habitat Guatemala on March 4, 2017,  I have 5 years of belonging to the Organization; where I have had contact with a large number of community families training on issues of Healthy Homes, Risk Management, Financial Education, Self-Esteem, and constructive issues, in wood-saving stoves, concrete floors, sinks, community family chicken coops which have been subsidized to families with the Program of Attention to Extreme Poverty and support for families affected in tropical storms.    

 I have also worked hand to hand with volunteers in following up with families who wish to improve their quality of life through social credits for the construction of housing; encouraging volunteers in the area in the commitment to serve others, thus cultivating the love of humanity and working selflessly for the development of others.  Also training them in leadership, organization and community participation, principles and values,  conflict management and communication. In order to strengthen the capacity and leadership of each volunteer to support the communities positively impacting their development. 

 I have seen firsthand the needs of the communities, as well as the transformation of the quality of life of the families through the projects and solutions provided by Habitat Guetemala, among those lives is mine, not only gave me the opportunity to grow professionally, but also in the realization of the dream that every family has, and that is to build my own home. 

A message to the Habitat community

To help our neighbor we do not need to have goods but only our will and a spirit of service and that in our heart we never run out of humanity, I share with you this quote 

“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” – Mother Teresa

 

 

Carlos Bolanos, Telma de Bolanos – HFH South

Carlos (44) and Thelma (42) live in their new house in Guastatoya, El Progreso.  

Carlos worked as a mason on a Habitat construction site, which is how they learned about the housing programs . After renting for a long time, they inherited a land and decided to start the construction of their own home.  Now Carlos and Thelma have a nice home for them and their children where they will grow safely. 

“The days of work with the volunteer brigade are unforgettable for us.” Telma says. They were all very nice and helpful. We thank them again from the bottom of our hearts for their support and for the wonderful time we spent together. Carlos Bolaños. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Karla Margoth Ardón Coronado – South Co

Karla  (24) lives with her daughter Deyanara (1.5) and her mother Blanca in Guastatoya, El Progreso. She greets us joyfully and shows us her new house. 

Karla’s brother, Christian, worked as a mason on a Habitat Guatemala construction site and introduced her the possibility of building a home.   

Before, we rented for years, our dream was to have our own house. And now we are very happy here, we have peace, and privacy. Now we can live with dignity. Thank you!” – Karla 

The family can now can save money that was used on rent and focus on more productive activities in the home.  

When the volunteers were here it was very interesting for us. Especially that the women also worked normally on the construction site. We are very grateful! Now we have our own house. Thank you!” – Karla and her mother tell us smiling. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leslie Alexandra González Fajardo – HFH Omaha

Leslie (35) lives in her new house on the outskirts of Sanarate, El Progreso with her mother Dolores (61) and her son Hessle (14). 

Leslie works at the Social Security Office in Guatemala City. For many years, Leslie and her motherlived with relatives or renting.  

In 2019, they heard about the possibility of building a house with Habitat Guatemala.  

“The local Habitat staff helped us to apply, then everything happened quickly. After only 6 months we moved in!” – she tells us joyfully. “We do feel very secure here.” 

When asked about the experience of working with volunteers, Leslie’s mom said: “We are very grateful for the help of the volunteers.  They were all very nice. We worked, ate and laughed together. We feel a great gratitude”. Leslie.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aura Alicia Trigueros Estrada – CISCO

“Pase adelante!” – Aura (40) says with her children Mariangel (8) and Hostin (10) as they invite us in to their home high up in the hills of Guastatoya, El Progreso.  

Aura is a single mother of 4 children.For many years, they moved regularily from one rental apartment to the next. Through friends she heard about Habitat Guatemala and with hard work, Aura managed to buy a land where she could build a home. The Habitat Guatemala staff helped her with the paperwork and the build. 

“Our last housing was made of wood and plastic, it was not good for us, the children were sick all the time. Now, we have a beautiful house. I can’t tell you how happy we are! Thanks to God and to all of you!” – Aura 

She proudly tells us about her chicken in the garden and that they always have fresh eggs. Next, she would like to buy a new gate and improve the entrance area of the plot. 

Regarding her experience working with the volunteers, Aura said: “When the volunteers came, we became friends. They really helped us a lot, thank you so much for that, I hope everyone is doing well wherever they are right now. I hope that one day we can meet again“. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dalila Coronaro Romero – CISCO

On the small terrace of her house overlooking Guastatoya, El Progreso, Dalila (46) welcomes us with a shy smile. She lives here as a single mother with her youngest daughter Gracieli (16). In the past, Dalila was rejected multiple times for a mortage. After inheritering a land from her father, a donor was found to help her build her home.  

“The Habitat staff here in Guastatoya was very helpful. Over the past 25 years, I have moved many times. I wanted very much to have my own house to live with dignity.” – Dalila 

Dalila and her daughter now have a safe place to call home and also plan to improve the terrace of her house in the future. She wanted to thank the volunteers for their support in building her new home: “It was a pleasure to work with the volunteers. I  invite them to come to visit me soon. I bless each and every one of you. Thank you! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#Meetourmasons – Manuel Felipe

Manuel Felipe is 60 years old, and with his wife, they raised 8 children. Seven years ago, one of his sons invited him to participate in the construction of smokeless stoves with Habitat Guatemala, and since then, he has been working not only in the construction of stoves, but also sanitary latrines and houses in different departments of the country, for Habitat Guatemala partner families 

When did you start working as a mason?

I studied a completely different career, but I always dreamed of building my house with my own hands, and so I did it! I started building and I found my passion. I love to build structures, houses, install electricity, plumbing, and do everything related to construction. This way, I can also help other people and serve others by building their homes. 

what do you enjoy most about working with habitat?

I love the idea of building dreams for future generations. With Habitat, I have had the opportunity to work with national and international volunteers, and I enjoy when we share experiences and work hard together. 

how do you feel by working with volunteers?

I feel proud to build alongside national and international volunteers. They are always a big support, and they are always happy and willing to work hard. I also enjoy to teach them about the constuction tasks! 

A message to the Habitat community

Thank you Habitat Guatemala, because you have given me the opportunity to work, no matter the circunstances. I love to build and I am so in love with my job!