Thousand Dollar Homes-Honduras 2019
For $1000 we are able to build these families a basic 12 foot by 16 foot wooden house. While they are not luxurious, they are very strong. The house uses four by four corner posts and two by four wall supports, which we use to support one inch thick boards that we use for the walls. Basically it is a large wooden box, with a metal roof and a cement floor. It has one door and no walls.
These simple structures serve as starter kit for the families. Their old houses are almost always torn down, which means that they use the remaining materials from their old house to build an outdoor kitchen. We try to convince people to build a kitchen as far from their house as possible, since almost all Hondurans use wood burning stoves. As for other amenities, each family's situation is different. Some have electricity, running water and bathrooms, while others have none of the above. What is consistent is the need for a new house.
We start with our $1000 house. Once that is completed, there can sometimes be additional projects that are needed. So far we have put in a basic solar power system in half of the houses we have built. For close to $150 we can purchase a system that provides three lights and the ability to charge USB device and cell phones, but no other appliances can be connected. For comparison, a solar system that is powerful enough to run one refrigerator costs over $2000. Most of these families though are far from affording any appliances.
Running water can be the most complicated. So far we have only done one water project. However we helped the family afford the costs of joining a much larger water project that was subsidized by a US based nonprofit dedicated to providing access to running water. Even then it still cost nearly $900 for us to set up an outhouse, septic tank, shower and washing area. Water projects are very important and can make a massive difference in the life of the family, however their cost can vary from a few hundred dollars to several thousand depending on what is required.
In short, if you are interested in a project that would include providing solar power or water access to a family, there are several houses that I could share with you that require the additional projects. We also have several houses that have great water, electricity and bathrooms already.
To give you a better idea of what $1000 goes for:
$100 for cement
$65 for a dump truck load of sand
$150 for the metal roofing material
$20 for screws and nails
$15 for hardware for the door
$35 for chemicals to cure/ protect the wood from termites
$15 for labor of a construction worker to help pour the cement floor
$45 for paint
$480 for wood
$75 for miscellaneous such as gas to the site
The Plan for 2019
1. We will be going March 9 to March 16. Factors that influenced the decision: desire to get there before too hot/humid, avoid hurricane season, road to the mountain is better in March-May.
I asked Walker to check with Pastor Marcos about the dates and he will. He did indicate that planning 8 minutes in advance in Honduras does not happen often.
2. We will be going back on top of the mountain to work with the church that we worked with last time. Factors that influenced the decision: prior relationships, current relationships, future relationships, good bathroom.
3. We will be teaching Bible School and building houses. We were successful with Bible School last time. Pastor Marcos said some of the children were on the floor crying as we left. Others wanted to know when we would return. We can teach Bible School with a team of 4-5 adults. Can we add some of the older children or Sunday School teachers from the church?
We can build a 12’ x 16’ house for about $1,000.00 with 4-5 people. These houses can sleep 4-6 people and can house their possessions that need to stay dry. The concrete floor provides a cool and dry place to sleep. If the homeowners are forced to relocate, they can take the house down and move it. Walker calls these homes starter homes since they do not have everything. The cost does not include water and septic. At the end of this memo, I have provided an explanation that Walker put together for someone who wanted to sponsor a house.
Assuming a team of 13-15 people, we can teach Bible School and build 2-3 houses. If we have a bigger team, we can add another house. Here is a build schedule: Before we get there-pre-treat the boards for termites and level the ground. Day 1, dig the holes and set the corner posts, Day 2, nail the walls, Day 3, install the roof, Day 4, pour the floor, Day 5, paint the house. The houses that are replaced are usually torn down and then rebuilt as a separate cooking shed.
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Covenant with Rey de Gloria Methodist Church, Artemis, Cuba
The beginning of CUMC's Covenant with Rey de Gloria Methodist Church, Artemisa Cuba.
After two United Methodist Volunteer In Mission teams visited and worked in two different areas in Cuba, there was a strong feeling there was more for CUMC to in accomplish in Cuba.
In 2013 the second team came home with connections that God put in place to begin a Sister Church Covenant. The mission committee was approached and gave their blessing. In March 2014, Pastor Randy and LeeAnn Orndorff, David and Karen Bean, Lee and Whitney Simpson traveled to Artemisa, Cuba, and officially formed the Covenant with Rey de Gloria. Since the inception of the Covenant CUMC has had at least two members visit Rey de Gloria each year. Our last visit was in June 2018, with a team of 16 members. This team provided necessary items that are not readily available in Cuba, along with some funds for them to begin construction on the Temple that is in great need of repair.
Many positive things are happening at Rey de Gloria as we have been obedient to God's call.
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Report from Gloria del Rey
In the name of the Lord we greet you and wish that the Lords peace be abundant in our hearts. This is a report of our present activities and ministry developments that are supported by Culpeper United Methodist Church.
Each Sunday for Sunday school we work with the materials that CUMC has provided (construction paper, card board, foam sheets, crayons, colored pencils, markers, pipe cleaners, glue, scissors, etc.)
We work with clowns for various activities using the clown costumes, accessories and make- up CUMC has provided us.
We were able to handout out toys and goodies during vacation bible school this summer.
Each Sunday after morning mass, lunch is provided for 70-80 people. This lunch helps with the economic needs of these people and has resulted in more people attending church. Furthermore, the utensils you provided us have improved our cooking conditions and the big pot allows us a better way to boil the food.
The construction of the interior hallway.
The construction of the church’s kitchen floor.
Reconstruction of the end wall of the church’s patio.
The construction of the floor of the laundry room.
Reconstruction of the exterior wall of the kitchen outside and rooms of the pastors house (I don’t know which rooms she is referring to.) Stones are being used to solve the humidity problem.
We rely on the work tools and accessories to aid in the construction work.
*Help with clothing, shoes and toiletry items for the congregation.
* Sewing pieces of clothing, repairing the scarves (the material they use to dance with or decorate the altar with), thread and a sewing machine. We have 2 pregnant women that we have been able to help by making panels for their clothing.
* The six fans that were purchased have improved the ventilation in the sanctuary.
* We have a medicine cabinet (medicine stop) using the medicines and medical supplies that were given to us. These supplies are provided based on needs of the congregation and provided to those who need them the most.
* We rely on the office supplies (files, calculators, scissors, loose leaf paper, pencils, pens)
*We rely on the blouses (clothing) used for the dances, theater and the equipment.
* We have improved the sound quality with the two new microphones.
* We rely on the new accessories for the dance ministry.
We are preparing for the beginning of the capital repairs to the roof and walls of all the rooms at the beginning of the new year. At this moment we already have in our hands the architectural plan for the remodeling and construction of the new premises for the future. We are looking at renting a house for the pastoral family to move into before beginning construction. We are reaching out to purchase construction materials in quantity.