Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Hope Through Housing: Part 3 of 3

Posted on behalf of Tom Owens

The notion of creating value through housing is an important one, especially when you consider that close to one billion people around the world live in inadequate housing. Substandard houses are unsafe, unhealthy and dangerous. Living in them is a constant worry, especially with children in the house. These are hardly places where families can prosper.

And besides impacting their health, security and peace of mind, a new or improved home is often the only asset of any value that many poor, working families have. A lot of these families have small-scale businesses that are based in their homes, so a good roof, for example, can help keep materials and inventory dry. The house is a foundation for the family to improve their future.

As one grateful housing recipient exclaimed, “¡Siempre soñaba con tener mi casita de material, pero ustedes ahora me han hecho este sueño una realidad!” (“I always dreamed of having a well-built house and now you have made this dream come true for me!”)

As much as I have seen this scene repeated over the years, it still never ceases to impress me. It reminds me how easy it is to take for granted our comfortable daily lives – a dry roof, running water, a warm house in the winter, electrical outlets in every room. It’s a dream that remains beyond the reach of so many. And it’s where Children International can make a huge difference in the lives of others.

Tom Owens is the Director of Grants for Children International.

No comments: