El Salvador

El Salvador

Thursday, March 15, 2018

1, 2, 3... THIRTY! by Nicole Goodwin & Cindy Crosbie

Well, we finally made it – we built 30 houses in 2.5 days! Can you believe it? Only through God’s will was this done. We have been so blessed with incredible leadership – Canadians and El Salvadorians – that also made this all possible.

So many things to share with you about today, that a blog could not possibly describe it all. The day started with our usual trek by and oversized pick up truck – packed in like cattle – in fact we even passed a truck that had exactly that being transported! When we say we are packed in – we mean with tools (shovels, pick axes, ladders), 3 huge jugs of water, 2 large coolers, lunch container, 6 large tool boxes, back packs, huge kids ministry bag, oh, and us humans (18 of us on each truck!).  We also had the usual heated conditions (35 degrees Celsius) but something was different today. There was a great energy amongst our teams.

The first build we did was in a bit of a precarious location. They were trying to tell us we needed to walk 1km with all of our tools etc. to the site – there was no way to drive in. Well, if you know how El Salvadorians talk, you would guess that 1km may actually mean 3 km! So I(Nicole!) begged to get a little closer with the truck. Little did we know that we would be going down the narrowest of narrow, bumpiest of bumpy ‘trails’ with the truck. Thanks to Omar and his excellent driving skills we made it to a respectable distance. We had to get a hose lifted, and use someone’s driveway to turnaround, but we did it!

This couple had been living in a very small house with 14 others for the last few years. Today, they got their own home. This man was so particular about his home, he wiped the dirt off the windows and doors – he was so proud to have his own home.
The hit of the whole trip was Cindy’s polaroid camera. She pulled it out at every site to give the families pictures of their homes. The kids loved seeing themselves in print and kept returning for more. She also tried to share some candy, black licorice, she is always trying to share snacks. Let’s just say next time, she will bring the red licorice!

One story that stuck out to me today was that of a young single mother of a two year old boy – Reynaldo. I got to meet him and was responsible for this young boy while his mother was interviewing. I thought, no problem, I’m a mom, a teacher, I can handle this. Well, he had A LOT of energy! It brought back memories of when my kids were young – chasing after them – don’t touch this, don’t touch that. But watching a 2 year old in El Salvador is a whole different story – don’t lean on that fence(it’s made of sheet metal and will cut you badly), don’t go over there (you’ll fall 15ft down) – a lot more to think about! And this little guy did NOT want to sit still! Can you imagine? She is 24 years old, on her own with her boy (who also has some serious health issues) – she is exhausted! Despite her 24/7 role as mom, she also single handedly cleared her land (mind you it took her an entire month!) for us to be able to build on. I was so happy that I could provide her with 30 minutes of time to talk to 2 ladies from our team to share her story with them.

We hoped to go to Ama Pulapa Waterpark today with the community but our priority was to get all of the homes built and couldn’t quite make it in time as 30 homes in 2.5 sets a new Shelter Canada and Bethany Church record!

After getting showered up we went off to the supermarket to get some groceries for tomorrow’s Compassion Centre visit. Looking forward to what it is store!
Love ya!
Cros and Nicole

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