The Ortiz Chan Family

After seven years of living in a rented house, Jaqueline and her husband, Lenin, knew that it was time to move into a house of their own when their landlord decided to raise the rent. Her father in-law encouraged them to find assistance in order to build their home. They went to work and searched around a few organizations, which had all too many requirements in order to apply. Because Lenin is a self employed mechanic, they did not have a solid proof of income to prove that they could pay off a loan. During this search, however, their perseverance paid off, because while visiting one of these organizations, one of the workers recommended her to talk to Habitat Guatemala.

They wasted no time. After learning that they were able to meet the requirements for a Habitat home, Jacqueline and Lenin submitted the application and were approved a month later. With great relief, they were able to move into their home during the month of December only four months after they applied.  Their previous landlord had always been very demanding and rarely gave them flexibility with monthly payments; a common problem for many self employed families. Now with a steady home, Lenin is able to focus on his work, and they can finally breathe knowing that they are paying for their own home and purchase furniture without worrying where they will go.

Having a new home has brought great stability to their life, and more importantly, a safe place for their daughters,Adriana (6) and Hilary(5) to live. Located right next to their old house there was a small cantina where drunken men constantly lurked about. “I don’t miss our old home,” Adriana said to her mother a few weeks after moving. This removed Jaqueline’s concern that their daughters wouldn’t feel comfortable in a new place. Now, they are free to study, play, and enjoy Ceci, a Beagle pup, and the newest addition to the family.

With respect tot he team that came down to build, Jaqueline couldn’t believe how hard the women worked during the process. Because she had never seen another  woman work like that before, let along a foreign woman, the experience broke all of her misconceptions of a “man’s job.”She said, “I ask God to bless you in every way for the willingness to help as well as the effort that you put into the building of our home.”

As for the future plans of their home; the family has already begun the construction of a second floor where they will have a room for both of their daughters and a large room for themselves. None of this could have been possible without the help of willing people, Habitat Guatemala, and the virtue of perseverance.