It was a support that she wouldn’t have gotten anywhere else.
Maria Susana, a 42-year-old elementary school teacher, was living on the upper side of a hill in the village of Agua Escondida for many years with her husband and children. However, things weren’t peaches and cream forever.
Things turned sour when Mildred and her husband separated, and Mildred moved down the hill to live with her mother. Mildred’s children, 17-year-old Kelli and 21-year-old Kevin, moved between the parents’ homes as they were caught in the gray area of the separation of their parents. Sometimes they would live with mom, sometimes with dad.
Mildred, unsettled with her kids’ instability as well as her own, applied to Habitat for Humanity Guatemala to build a new home. As a single mother of two kids with a steady job, she was approved for credit.
As her home was being built during thanksgiving week, volunteers came to lend a hand. “We appreciate the work they did here,” says Mildred. “We are happily living here now. Blessings to all of your families and thanks for helping us build our house.”
Mildred’s family life has changed. Now, her children have a bedroom – a permanent place to call home. Mildred says the best part of her new home is “the unity of my children.”
As she tells about her new house, she’s seated at the kitchen table with her mother, Maria Carlota, who lives right next door, only 20 feet away. Maria has cooked lunch in her house and has taken it to Mildred’s place because it’s so comfortable and spacious. It’s not just a unity of children, but of the entire family.
Mildred says she’s thinking about the well-being of her children, and what they will inherit down the road. She wants to be able to provide them with a space that they can call their own as well, and she has been able to achieve that through Habitat Guatemala.
The house came with a surprise benefit. When Mildred was deciding what type of home to build, she chose a reinforced model that permits the construction of a second level. So when her brother was having marital problems as well, Mildred was able to provide him with a space to build – right on top of her own house. Since the original construction of the Habitat home, there has been an expansion on the side and a second level on top. Mildred says they wouldn’t have been able to achieve what they’ve done without the original support of Habitat Guatemala.