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A roof for my land

I have never owned a piece of land of my own but I have always had a home.

I went once on a crusade to build houses for underprivileged people. As we approached, I could see the city´s south hills covered with houses built with tins and, in the distance, our first assignment: a small, very steep terrain. Beneficiaries agree to purchase a terrain and prepare it so we explored the site: someone had worked on this side of the hill making a flat surface. We were guessing if it was long enough when the owner showed up: a young woman carrying an 8th month pregnant belly. She had a smile on her face and immediately started talking without a pause. She had two other small children, was it going to be long? So happy to have us there! She struggled so much to get credit to purchase the land! Even to get someone to work on it… in her condition… And she was alone!

Before we could say anything in between her anxious sentences, our leader looked sadly at her and said it wasn’t firm enough and the house would probably slide down at the first rain. Her eyes were starting to glow with tears so I just jumped into the leveled section. I sank knee-high in mud. A little noise of surprise escaped my mouth immediately followed by the woman´s sob eruption.

She had her land but she had no home for her or her children.


JaniceW's picture

So moving

This is so sad to me. I have participated in builds for underprivileged people here but have never encountered such a situation. How devastated the woman must have been after struggling to get the credit to own this worthless piece of land. I feel blessed to have a home, even if I do not own the land. Thank you for sharing this story.

Maria Cuellar's picture


This is a very touching story. It reminds me of the many places in the world (eg. Thailand, Burma, Haiti, etc.) where the government decides to build a dam to supposedly "help the people," but what ends up happening is that there are thousands of displaced families, who used to live where the project is built, with no land and no help from the government. It is as if they were disposable income. This woman seems to have a different problem, but it is equally devastating. So what did you do in the end? Did you leave?

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