Imagine living with your family in a house where the structure is worn and fragile. A house that can collapse at any time. This is the reality of Erica, a resident of the city of Palmeira, in the interior of the Brazilian state of Paraná. With the heavy rains and winds of South America’s winter season, the home was even more insecure. In desperation, the family shared their need via a social network. It was there that Adventist youth from the Mission Caleb project found their cry for help.
During a storm in the month of June, Erica's house was untouched. The Calebs were at the site repairing the roof but saw the family’s critical situation: “We saw the family’s need and decided to find the resources to build them a new home,” said Fabio Ruchinski, a volunteer.
The volunteers from Palmeira joined those from Ponta Grossa and set out to build a new home for Erica, her husband, and their two children. Even though it is the vacation period for many in Brazil, volunteers have set aside their holidays for the construction project.
The young people have obtained the necessary materials, cleared the land, and are working to transform the family home. “Seeing them here is priceless. They could be with their families, but they are here, helping me. I have no way of explaining the joy I am feeling,” says the homeowner.
Leaving a mark
The holidays have taken on a new meaning and are being used to leave a special mark on people's lives, like Erica's. “Despite their limitations, young people are moved by the challenge. They found something, even in the middle of the pandemic, to be useful. This shows the community that the church remains alive and active,” said Pastor Elizeu Ortiz, local Seventh-day Adventist Church pastor.