The López Colop Family

Julio (45), Rosa Maria (38), Edgar (36), Martarelli  (33), and Daniel (27) are siblings. They are five of their parents eight children who live together in the rural town of Cantel, Quetzaltenango.

When they were children, their parents taught each of them to weave and now they all have this ability that sustains their livelihood. Daniel and Martarelli work in a Cooperative, while Julio, Edgar and Rosa work from home to create new pieces of fabric for sale. They’ve been doing this for many years and find that by working together, they are more productive and profitable.

Nineteen years ago, their parents moved into a 3-bedroom adobe home. When both parents passed, the home was left to all eight siblings. They’ve lived in and maintained the house since, living two or three in each bedroom until just recently when Daniel petitioned for the family to pool together and build a new house. The new house would be an addition to the existing house that would make their communal living more comfortable and give each person a chance to have their own room. The result is a brand-new Habitat home connected to their family’s existing house and the family love it – the old and the new, side by side.

Julio lives in the old part of the house and the remaining four siblings, Rosa Maria, Edgar, Martarelli and Daniel have their rooms in the new part of the house.

When asked about the volunteers, Julio shared that they were great volunteers, worked hard and had a great attitude.

José agreed, ‘that they were joyful, always smiling and shared this sentiment, “it wasn’t important to them our differences but it was important to them to help—and because of this, we all got along really well.”

Their message to the group is this “the fruit of your labor is what we have—that our family can enjoy. Thank you for all that you paid to come a long way to help other families without knowing them—it’s a great thing what you did. We are very grateful to you for this help, Daniel is always saying what a great place we have and live in now. It was a beautiful experience.”