About Us

How It All Started

International human rights law states that everyone has the right to an adequate standard of living, including adequate housing. Caroline van Heerde founded Constru Casa back in 2004; she envisioned a Guatemala without poverty, with everyone living in dignified housing.

Caroline worked with local organizations, partners, volunteers, and donors from all over the world to make Constru Casa what it is today. Over the years, we have built over 1400 homes and 200 community buildings and have helped many families and communities. The construction process doesn’t stop there. The number of families we are helping keeps growing. We partner with many local organizations to work in very remote communities and reach out to the most needed Guatemalans. Thank you to our supporters for making Caroline’s dream of a better Guatemala become a reality!

“I am immensely proud of the impact that we make; it is unique for a grassroots organization. It is extremely rewarding to work together with a great group of people and with a continuously growing group of supporters. I look forward to seeing how Constru Casa continues to grow.”     

–  Caroline

Mission

To improve the quality of life among Guatemalans living in extreme poverty through holistic community development with the provision of basic housing, support programs and community building for health and education programs.

Vision

A Guatemala without poverty, exclusion, and dependency, in which poor families no longer have to endure poor living conditions. Through community development in the areas of housing, education, and healthcare, these families become socially and economically stable.

Our Team

Caroline van Heerde

Director

Ulises began working for Constru Casa in April of 2013. He is in charge of the administration, finances, and accounting in the Association. He graduated with an accounting degree and is now finishing his thesis for Public and Auditory Accounting. He has worked for more than 8 years in NGO’s and is thankful to be a part of building new homes with Constru Casa.

Ulises Gudiel

Administrative and Financial Manager

Ulises began working for Constru Casa in April of 2013. He is in charge of the administration, finances, and accounting in the Association. He graduated with an accounting degree and is now finishing his thesis for Public and Auditory Accounting. He has worked for more than 8 years in NGO’s and is thankful to be a part of building new homes with Constru Casa.

Evelyn Sandoval

Operations Manager

Evelyn has been the head of the operations department in Constru Casa since 2016. She has studied Architecture and Psychology, and as the Operations Manager, the main part of her work is the planning of each project and the supervision of construction and social relations.

Fredy Maldonado

Public Relations Manager

Fredy joined Constru Casa in September of 2018. He is in charge of public relations and overseeing communications and promotions. He has more than 25 years of experience working in educational, social, environmental and economic development programs in different organizations in rural and urban areas of Guatemala. His main goal is to provide dignity to Guatemalans in poverty.

Martha Tobar

Financial Assistant and Human Resources

Ana Lynch

Communications Coordinator

Geovani Zuñiga

Programs Officer

Geovani became a part of the Constru Casa team in 2009. He works alongside our allied partners in the construction programs. He visits the families to run studies before construction and to supervise the follow up programs after construction. He will also install stoves and water filters as well as lead the education on the use and health benefits of these products.

Sandra Garcia

Volunteers Program Coordinator

Board of Directors in Guatemala

Bárbara Manon Derks

President

Amy joined Constru Casa in 2018 and has been working in the area of promotions and public relations. She first came to Guatemala from Canada in early 2018 to study Spanish for 5 months and from there began working with Constru Casa. Her work focuses on event planning, being in contact with our donors, photography and media, and other methods of promoting Constru Casa.

Roberto Bianchi

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Leonel Estuardo López

Vice President

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Mariela Bautista

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

María del Carmen Holm

Secretary

Geovani became a part of the Constru Casa team in 2009. He works alongside our allied partners in the construction programs. He visits the families to run studies before construction and to supervise the follow up programs after construction. He will also install stoves and water filters as well as lead the education on the use and health benefits of these products.

Raquel Rodriguez

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Caroline van Heerde

Treasurer

Amy joined Constru Casa in 2018 and has been working in the area of promotions and public relations. She first came to Guatemala from Canada in early 2018 to study Spanish for 5 months and from there began working with Constru Casa. Her work focuses on event planning, being in contact with our donors, photography and media, and other methods of promoting Constru Casa.

All the members of our board serve on a voluntary basis.

Board of Directors in United States

Jim Hille

President

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Ron Sack

Vice President

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Luke Bretscher

Treasurer

Geovani became a part of the Constru Casa team in 2009. He works alongside our allied partners in the construction programs. He visits the families to run studies before construction and to supervise the follow up programs after construction. He will also install stoves and water filters as well as lead the education on the use and health benefits of these products.

Jim Johnson

Secretary

Amy joined Constru Casa in 2018 and has been working in the area of promotions and public relations. She first came to Guatemala from Canada in early 2018 to study Spanish for 5 months and from there began working with Constru Casa. Her work focuses on event planning, being in contact with our donors, photography and media, and other methods of promoting Constru Casa.

John Lothrop

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Juliet Bagwell

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Kent Eaton

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Judy Greenwald

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

Hollie Schmidt

General Member

Ingrid began to work for Constru Casa in July of 2018. She is in charge of overseeing human resources and works in administration and finances. She has a diploma in business administration and is currently studying to complete a bachelor of human resources. She finds satisfaction in working with Constru Casa not only because of a new home for families but by seeing the change in the lives of Guatemalans.

All the members of our board serve on a voluntary basis.

Board of Directors in The Netherlands

Folkert Piersma

President

My name is Folkert Piersma. Before Carolien went to Guatemala, we were colleagues and after she left we kept in touch. This connection made me visit Guatemala in 2005, at the end of a six-month sabbatical leave, when driving my bike from Alaska to Mexico. I was in Guatemala with my wife for about 2 weeks, had collected the money for a house and helped on the construction of it for 3 days. For most of my working life I have been active as a project manager at the Dutch Railway Company. After my retirement I want to stay active, among other things as a board member of this foundation. Helping the less fortunate people in Guatemala and especially improving their housing, education and health care conditions, it really appeals to me. As a chairman of the board, I hope to be able to contribute to the continuation and, if possible, expansion of the activities and goals for Constru Casa.

Maaike Dijkmans

Secretary

I have been coming to Guatemala for more than 20 years now. For me Guatemala is still the most beautiful country on earth. Like many others, I can’t explain this, but Guatemala has something magical. At the same time, there is so much poverty, inequality and violence. Our family business, where I worked for a long time, supported various projects in Guatemala and I try to visit every year. For a long time, it always felt like I was not collaborating enough. In recent years, my work and passion are getting connected more and more. I created the Marky Foundation with the goal to get as many children as possible into school. The intention is to create more impact, year by year. In this line, it also fits to get involved as a secretary of the board of Constru Casa in The Netherlands. Together we can achieve so much more to help the poorest and most needed families in Guatemala towards a better future. I really believe this!

Andries Bijmold

Treasurer

All the members of our board serve on a voluntary basis.

Visit our Dutch website at www.construcasa.nl

Team of Masons

Our masons are all highly skilled and hardworking local Guatemalans. They build the houses and community buildings from the ground up, often with the help of our volunteers. The masons are very patient and teach the volunteers about building, Spanish – and sometimes, soccer! We are lucky to have such a great team of masons to help us build better lives in Guatemala.

Constru Casa Europa

Constru Casa Europa connects companies with a strong sense of social responsibility to a Guatemalan family in need, to provide them a simple yet decent house towards a better future.

Transparency Statement

In our transparency statement, we dive deeper into our funding, and how we spend budget on our different programs. 

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