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SHARING THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST WITH OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN HONDURAS
 
 

The Carpenteros and Friends

Celebrating with the grateful community of La Cantera

Through support from the One Day Challenge, a number of community projects took place in La Cantera.  The information which follows is taken directly from the final report, highlight the process and projects that took place in 2015.

The Community

La Cantera is a neighbourhood in Flor del Campo, near the Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa, made up mostly of migrant families that came from the countryside in the hope of improving their quality of life (economic and educational level). But their hope of a better life is torn down due to a lack of education and few job opportunities.

In addition,La Cantera is a community where the willingness of good people is viewed with suspicion, and it is considered a "problem" sector due to crime, and no government agency has any presence there. Many political promises of aid have never been fulfilled.

Community solidarity is not one of the values that this population has experienced, at least not until the arrival of aid that was made through the "Carpenteros" working with the Association for a More Just Society.

The planning of these construction projects was conducted under an atmosphere of uncertainty. It wasn't until they saw trucks arriving with materials that the project beneficiaries believed it was real and not just another broken promise.

The Process

An initial meeting took place with community leaders and families who make up the Youth Impact program. With the help of a faciliatator, participants developed a ‘Community Transformation Plan’ that identified major problems such as:

1. Not having pilas poses a danger to children who must take buckets with water from the river to their homes, and many times they are removed from school or studies to finish that chore.

2. Diseases caused by parasites and insects for not having the appropriate places where they can get rid of harmful wastes causing damage to the hygiene and health of the residents, especially children.

3. Not having a structure that protects residents from the sun while they are making tortillas, impairing not only their health but also some items for the food preparation.

Taking into account all these considerations, it was determined that the priority projects were to build pilas, latrines, galleys (outdoor kitchens) and concrete floors.

The selection of beneficiaries was done through home visits, giving priority to people with greater economic difficulties. All beneficiaries had limited resources, as the main source of income is the sale of tortillas and the recycling of bottles and plastic containers. 

The Projects

In total, 40 families (255 adults and children) benefited from the projects (11 galleys, 5 floors, one stair structure, 19 water storage tanks or “pilas”, and 4 latrines/outdoor toilets). 

The main challenge was the transportation of the construction material, as the delivery truck driver would not enter La Cantera for fear of being assaulted. Therefore, the people had to pull the sand, gravel, cement, bricks and lumber a long distance, and the load was heavy.

The projects were:

  • construction of 11 galleys; benefiting 75 people
  • construction of five concrete floors; 25 people were benefited
  • building 19 pilas (capacity of 7 barrels); 124 beneficiaries in total
  • constructing four latrines; benefiting 24 people. Before construction, families were required to make ready the ground hole that would contain the waste

It was also possible to build a stair structure benefiting the Maradiaga Briseño family, who had only a straight ladder to climb up to their house. Mrs. Olivia Sofia Briseño (mother of the household) had suffered a fall that left her with strong backaches, and the dangerous hill would become very slippery in winter. The stairs serve not only this family of five members, but also their neighbours who live further up the hill and who are forced to pass through the same area. One of these people is the mother of Mrs. Olivia Briseño, who is a senior citizen.

The Impact

Throughout the projects, we had the cooperation of community leaders that allowed us to conduct the whole process without negative incidents.

This opportunity for improvements to housing that has been provided by the "Carpenteros" has come to cement the confidence that the people of La Cantera have placed in the Youth Impact Program, and to give hope to the people of La Cantera that by working in unity everything can change.

By surveying the beneficiaries of the project, 100% of the people considered the construction as beneficial, since many did not have the financial resources.

We also asked if the beneficiaries had planned the construction of a new project; 90 percent of the target population responded that after the construction they were motivated to plan new improvement projects – when they have the necessary resources – to make further improvements to their homes such as bedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms or expanding their homes.  In many cases, carrying out the project with the "Carpenteros" was what gave the impetus to building goals for the future.

The Beneficiaries

After the hard work of all participants, a celebration meeting was held on November 27, 2015 where we shared a nice time and many of the beneficiaries gave words of appreciation, including Mrs. Maria Glendis Lazarus, beneficiary of a pila construction project.

"In the past, we used to haul in buckets water from the river or from our neighbor, Eulalio. Now everything is different. We learned to work together and that we have to be united, we thank the neighbours and of course you Carpenteros for the help you have given us, we thank you wholeheartedly"

This is the new pila of Dona Maria, thanks to the assistance given. It has a stable washboard; the water comes directly to her pila and stores seven barrels of water. Attached to the pila they made a small square of concrete where they plan to place a shower stall.

Mrs. Bertilia Garcia, also a beneficiary of the pila construction project expressed:

"First grateful to Almighty God, because the difficulties that my family and I went through was that the water in my house would only come at night, sometimes it comes and sometimes it won’t, and we just had some shabby barrels. I would take care and economize the little water that we could collect, but sometimes the barrels would get holes in them and all the water would leak out. Still the water was not enough because we are many in my family and the water comes every three days.

To me this project is a big help and blessing from God. Now I can have water to clean the house, bathing, washing dishes, I can wash clothes more comfortably, because before I used to wash in a small stone. My family and I are very grateful to the supporters who made these projects possible and may the Almighty God continue to bless them greatly."

Mrs. María, a latrine project beneficiary expressed:

"I thank God first and the donors who made these grants possible through these people full of love for their neighbour, and on behalf of my family I thank you because you have helped my family not only materially but also spiritually, and they have been taught and my children have now changed. We are now different, we are strong families. I ask you to continue helping families in need and ask God to continue to pour blessings on your families and in your homes and may be Him who always guides you."

Residents from the neighborhood of La Cantera feel grateful and content for having achieved the goals of the project, improved conditions of life and learned teamwork as a community.

The Gideon team wants to thank the Carpenteros for their support, which has helped us to establish ourselves as a program in the area. As residents of the area (including criminal gangs) have now seen with good eyes that we are working on spiritual formation, active citizenship and prevention among children. This project has convinced many residents (also those who were against the program) that we seek the good of the community.

Miriam Mondragón

Gideon Youth Impact program coordinator,

Tegucigalpa, Honduras

December 18, 2015

Education Fund

The Carpenteros' Education Fund partners with parents in remote, impoverished communities so their children can continue to receive a high school education.

Hope for Honduras

The Building Hope for Honduras dinner takes place in late September or early October. For tickets, or to become a sponsor, please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Valentine's Bistro

The February Valentine's Bistro provides funding for various community development projects and supports the Carpenteros' Education Fund.

Windows of Hope

Through your support, the Windows of Hope program assists the neediest Hondurans to improve their homes, obtain much-needed medicine, or have access to clean water and sanitary facilities.

Upcoming Events

VALENTINES BISTRO

Sat., Feb. 10, 2018 at 6:00 p.m.

Providence Christian School

Ofield Road, just N of Hwy 5

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Join a Team

Carpenteros teams typically serve in Honduras during the last week of November and into early December. To learn more about joining a Carpenteros team and serving in a Honduran community for 9-10 days, please send an email message to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call Ken at 905-689-5491.

How You Can Help

The Carpenteros and Friends depend on a dedicated team of volunteers. In addition to offering financial support, we invite you to learn more about the various ways how you can help our brothers and sisters in Honduras.