In January we committed to putting one nickel aside from every Spanish-language book we sold to provide shelter for a family in the El Salvadoran village that we supported last year. Thanks to our customers, we’ve raised over half of the funds we need!
We are working with a local group in El Salvador who will select a family and build a safe, permanent shelter for them. From a list of ten families, the organization has narrowed it down to three. The family who is chosen will help build the structure that will do more than shelter them from the weather – it will give them a sense of stability, which has been shown to contribute to welfare, education and health.
The family helps construct their own shelter. They use cinderblocks to build the walls and corrugated tin for the roof. Materials are trucked in and a small concrete floor slab is mixed onsite. That’s quite a difference from the pieces of tin and wood patchworked together as makeshift walls and roof over a dirt floor that many villagers currently dwell in. The new dwelling can protect families from landslides, earthquakes and floods. Safe housing can also be a first step to helping families out of extreme poverty. By putting down roots in one location, children can go to school, the family can form bonds with neighbors, and the parents can find what work they can, knowing they have a clean, safe house to come home to every night.