More Than a New Home: Local Church Brings Safety, Health, and Connection to its Neighbors

Antonia and her children in front of their crumbling adobe house.Antonia and María Trinidad are two hard-working and courageous women living in El Triunfo, El Salvador. Like many other rural women, their lives have not been easy; the long days of working in the sun are etched on their faces. Making ends meet for themselves and their children means farming, cooking, cleaning, gathering wood and hauling water every day.

Antonia, has four children. Elmer is 11 years old and attends school. Jefferson Isaias and Jefferson David (eight-year-old twins) remain home with little sister, Keiry who is seven. Their father has long since left the family and they survive from what Antonia can make farming, which is about $5 a day.

Similarly, Maria Trinidad (photo) is a single mother raising two children, Jaqueline (13) and Eldi (10). Maria Trinidad has raised them on her own since they were very young. She works from sun up to sun down trying to make ends meet.

The dwellings that both families lived in were terribly run down. During the rainy season there was always a strong fear that the houses would collapse. The daub and wattle was so old that the walls would crumble at a mere touch. The rusty aluminum sheets and plastic roof provided little in the way of protection from small animals and the rain.

As ENLACE helped the local church work with community leaders to respond to the needs in their community, the need for adequate housing was identified as well as possible beneciaries. These two women and their children were among the first on the list. Many members of the church live in similar situations but they were excited that they could show God's love to their neighbors who were living with such extreme need. Both women worked alongside the church volunteers as their new homes were built and they established new and deep friendships.

Antonia's new home. She and her children are healthier, safer and more connected to their church and community!Antonia and Maria Trinidad were so appreciative that even though they are not part of the church, they have joined the church team that is creating an eco-stove project with the community. This development of friendship and connection has dramatically changed Antonia and Maria’s experience of life and the possibilities for their children. Truly, a home is more than a home! 

(Antonia and Maria are just two of the many beneficiaries to receive new homes in El Triunfo. A complete picture gallery is coming soon!)

Projects such as these wouldn't be possible without ENLACE walking alongside the church and community providing technical assistance and support. Click here and Let Your Light Shine this holiday season by making a donation to families like Antonia and Maria's!