The first sound heard when entering Nelson and Dulia Morales’s home is cheering. In their bedroom, the local soccer game is airing on television. After scoring a quick goal, their favored team is in the lead. “It’s nice to be here, and we’re two people, without any worries,” remarks Nelson. “We can invite people over to watch the soccer game and because there is more space, we can cheer for our team as loud as we want!”
Nelson and Dulia have only lived in their Habitat for Humanity Guatemala home for a few weeks, but they have come to experience a fresh new form of freedom. Before building their home, the couple lived with Nelson’s parents for two years. However, the house had problems. “It was older,” recalls Nelson. “There were leaks coming through the roof, which caused problems.”
“It’s necessary to be independent,” adds Dulia. “We didn’t want to rely on in-laws for everything.”
Soon, the two of them began to consult moving options. However, because both Nelson and Dulia are teachers, they were worried about the costs of housing. Luckily, Nelson’s parents suggested Habitat for Humanity Guatemala for its economic flexibility. “We liked how with Habitat, you pay monthly over a long term period of time,” says Nelson. “So we went for more information at the local affiliate and decided to go for it. We wouldn’t have had our new house without Habitat Guatemala, and we’re finally starting a new dream, a new life.”
For three and a half months, the couple worked on the construction of their new home. Each day, after they finished up teaching at the local school, they were present for the building. For one week, a group of international volunteers took part. Nelson and Dulia’s faces light up when they are mentioned. “The group of volunteers came in May,” remembers Dulia. “They were friendly and collaborative. For ten days, they helped us advance on our house. We had contests to see who could build more rebar, and they won.” They laugh.
Both Nelson and Dulia are grateful for the volunteers’ hard work. “The people who came here, they are blessed with all of our hearts. Everything was pleasant and wonderful, they are also in the hearts of my family. I am grateful for the entire team. They entered so graciously, and for that, may God bless them. Wherever they may be, they will also receive our support. If you come back, we will be waiting for you.”
Their new house has been nothing short of a great improvement, and Nelson and Dulia are eager to create new memories. Dulia enjoys that there is more space and that their house is becoming one to call their own. “We plan to paint, to continue with small progressions,” she notes. “We don’t have kids yet, but they’ll be here soon!”