This year, Bridges built 18 houses in our partner community of La Guama, D.R. With sturdy cinderblock walls and a roof attached to the foundation instead of a wobbling structure cobbled together from scrap lumber and plastic sheeting, the homes we build remain standing after a hurricane. With a cement floor instead of damp dirt beneath their feet, children and parents don’t get sick as often. Doors and windows that lock allow family members to go to work and school without worrying about their belongings.
Honelis Brioso and her family of 6 received a Bridges house in La Guama this past year. Honelis lives with 5 of her 6 children, ages 5-18, and one grandson. They used to rent a home but were forced to move after Honelis’s husband, the sole provider for the family, passed away five years ago from various health complications. It was a hard blow to the family who could no longer afford the rental cost of their home; they found refuge in a relative’s’ wind and rain-damaged tin home.
After her husband passed away, Honelis and her daughter Modestina,18, began working hard in the field as day laborers to provide for the family. Honelis also found a job as a janitor at the local elementary school. Honelis was unable to better the family’s housing situation as they were barely getting by. That changed this year when Bridges built her new home with our volunteers.
Honelis says, “I am so happy in my new home, and I love everything about it. It has been hard to be a single mother since my husband passed away, and we feel so blessed to have this house.
Before we lived in an old house in terrible condition and we got wet anytime it rained. It was also very small – just two small bedrooms for all of us. In our old house, you could see through the big gaps in the walls all the way into the bedroom. Anyone outside could see us if we were laying down in bed. Now it’s not like that, we are much more comfortable and I feel that my children and grandchildren can grow up in a more secure home. As a single mother with mostly women in the house, we feel so much safer in our new home. This new house represents a better future for my children and me.
We are grateful to Bridges to Community and all the volunteers and donors who are changing the lives of so many families in this community.”