Mexico Housebuilding Trip
Hello Friends and Family!
We hope this finds you well! Here we are preparing for our 9th annual Thanksgiving Homes for Hope trip.
We are so thankful to be able to go again with Trevor and Chase as it is such a powerful experience.
Below are a few pictures from last year's family, showing their old home, a big tent with holes surrounded by boards, palette wood/dirt floors, holy tarp as a roof with exposure to wind and rain. Trevor especially connected with little Carlos and we hope to see them again this year.
We are humbled and so thankful to be a part of bringing the hope of a new home to these families. To see them light up as they realize they will now be safe, dry and warm is a gift beyond words.
We remember telling one of the fathers who received a home, that we were the labor, but that people from back home were financially sponsoring his home and praying for them. His eyes filled with tears as he could not imagine why anyone would care about him and his family. What a blessing!
This year will be interesting because we have less folks on our team, only 26, many of which are kids. We are still committing to build two homes, but it will be A LOT of work! It's not too late to join us! ;)
We have generously been gifted the funds for one house and so only need to raise money for the other which is $6,550 for the home plus $1,500 for the furniture kit. If there are extra funds we try to bless the families with a few special items.
Last year's family wanted to start a tamale business so we were able to purchase their business license, a huge pot, a small freezer and all the supplies they needed to get their business started.
If you would like to partner with us through prayer or financial support it would be greatly appreciated! As our travel is quickly approaching, we would like to have all funds by Friday, November 10th. Any donations will be tax deductible. Thank you so much!
Love and blessings to you!
The Berry Family,
Jeff, Nora, Trevor (12) and Chase (9)
We hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, we sure did! And thanks to all of you so did the Valadez-Castro family!
This year was unique in that our family, Jorge, Marisela, Evelin(11) and Carlitos (4) have been renting the downstairs of a home while at the same time paying for their own land. They have had a double payment for four years! Remember these folks only make $60 and $50/week! You cannot get loans in Mexico so to build a house is nearly impossible as you have to have cash in hand. To make things even more challenging their payments must be in US dollars even though they get paid in pesos. So as the exchange rate fluctuates their payments increase. Last year the exchange was 12 pesos to $1 and this year it was 18 pesos to $1, making it increasingly difficult for them. Both Jorge and Marisela work overlapping hours in different factories, Jorge from 5:00am to 7:00p.m. and Marisela from 4:00pm to 1:00am, 5 days a week. They proudly shared that they had never been even one day late on either payment!
They said they were motivated because they wanted their kids to have a home of their own. Without Homes for Hope and your help they would have no chance of doing this.
I had the pleasure of working with Marisela a lot of the time. We painted all of her drywall together. She made sure that the painting was perfect. We painted outside in the sunshine, but the heat would dry the paint, creating little clumps as we worked. We would meticulously take out the clumps over and over again until we had a smooth surface. She was very detail oriented and beamed with joy as she worked on her new home.
Another sweet thing was her relationship with her daughter. Culturally families are not always playful, but I caught a moment when mother and daughter were painting together and Evelin painted her mom's face, they laughed and it was precious.
At one point Marisela and I entered the home. Prior to putting up the drywall, Jeff had written all the names of this year's angels on the inside wall, she looked over and I explained to her why those names were there and who each of you were. Her eyes welled with tears. She had not been told how the whole thing worked, just that some families were going to come and build them a home. She said that it meant that much more to have you all be a part of it! She asked me to please tell you “thank you, a million times thank you, she will remember this forever!”
This year, since Trevor is 12, he got to be on the roof for the first time, which he really enjoyed. Chase painted quite a bit the first day then spent time playing with Carlitos and the other kids. Jeff was busy everywhere doing everything and anything. Although our team was smaller, we worked really well together along with the YWAM Staff and had a great time.
Because of your incredible generosity we were able to purchase the furniture kit, which includes a bunk bed, bedding, refrigerator, stove, dining room table and chairs, table setting, pots and pans as well as other basic necessities. We had money to spare so were also able to take the family shopping. We shared this with Marisela and she filled with tears; it was a very emotional moment.
When we handed over the keys and dedicated the house at the end of the build, Jorge broke down, you could see the weight of the burden he had been carrying being lifted. So powerful!
We are so thankful for each of you and your partnership! We can only hope that you truly realize this could not be done without YOU! Next year will be our 10th year, we would love to have you join us! =)
God bless you all and have a wonderful Christmas!
Love and blessings!
Yes, you are all angels for what YOU are making happen this Thanksgiving!
We are overwhelmed by your incredibly generous support, not only did we meet our goal but exceeded it by almost $2,000!! Makes me teary! Thank you again for partnering with us!
We just received the info for this year's family! We will be building for Jorge and Marisela Valadez Castro, they are 33 and 31, have 2 children, Evelin, 11 and Carlos, 4. They are both factory workers, making $60 and $55 per week.
We depart this Sunday and return late Friday. It is truly incredible to think of what will happen in that very short period of time. Such a small sacrifice for us, that will have a forever impact on this family.
On Thanksgiving day we will visit a local orphanage where we have been before. We get to cook them breakfast and spend a little time there, which is always a gift.
May you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and know that we are so thankful for each of you and that because of your generosity this family will be getting a home!! Crazy! Will send pics upon our return.
God bless you,