I have a very special New Year's resolution which I need some help to fulfil. In 2014 it is my biggest wish to complete a project that I began with some friends 7 years ago whilst volunteering in a shanty town in Lima, Peru. Whilst I was there my friend Pamela and I made friends with a beautiful family; Jesus, Luis and their mother Juana. Juana is a single mother and when I met them they lived together in one room that looked like this:
The conditions were dreadful yet this family are amongst the happiest and kindest people I have ever met - when we visited the house for the first time Juana spent her last Peruvian soles on fizzy drinks so that she could give Pamela and I a proper welcome into their home. We resolved to help them and together with some friends put together enough money to have this wooden house built for them which offered a bit more protection from the harsh Peruvian winters.
Off the back of this little project the charity that we were volunteering with - Quest 4 Change - started a new house building project to help single parent families and many more families have since seen improvements in their living conditions.
Unfortunately, after seven years, the weather has taken its toll on the family's little wooden house. As the boys have got older (they are now 16 and 14) they are still living in a single room with their mother who is less able to work due to ill health following a road accident.
It is my greatest wish to be able to finish what we started and build them a concrete house with a proper floor, a window and a toilet that gives this family the sort of sanitation and privacy that many of us take for granted. I am travelling to Peru for one month in March in order to oversee this project and make sure that any money which I am fortunate enough to raise is delivered directly to the family for this purpose.
If you are able to donate any amount I would be hugely grateful - no amount is too small to be of use and even if I can't reach my target I will make sure that every penny is spent on improving their living conditions in time to make the next winter that bit more bearable.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this.
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