“The volunteer experience of helping other people is a unique feeling”
Thomas, 25 years old, volunteered with Constru Casa at the beginning of this year. He decided to travel all by himself from Austria, because he wanted to help the less fortunate in Guatemala.
Thomas says: “Growing up in Austria, I never experienced existence-threatening poverty which sadly is the reality for many people in Guatemala. I’ve wanted to help the people who aren’t as fortunate as I am. I reached out to Constru Casa, and together we came up with a solid volunteer program for me to be part of while in Guatemala.
It was an adventure to go alone to Guatemala, a country far away from my home. From the moment I arrived in Guatemala City, I immediately felt at home. Constru Casa was really welcoming!”
Thomas and two of our masons built a house with two rooms for the José Family. The family consists of José, his wife Monica, and their two young children. The father worked during the day but still found time to help build the house. Thomas tells us: “It was great seeing the everyday progress. I will never forget the day we handed over the completed house, the family was so grateful for our help!”
Throughout the building process, Thomas realized how much the new house meant to the family, even though it consists just of a couple of walls. A new house means improvement of their health, their outlook on life, and their life in general.
If Thomas would recommend his volunteer experience? Thomas explained: The experience with Constru Casa in Guatemala was unique and moved me on a profound level. I really recommend working with this organization to everyone who has the possibility to help in that way and wants to help change the world – or just a part of it.”
Thomas continues to support Constru Casa as an Ambassador from his home, in Austria. Build better lives in Guatemala, just like Thomas. Visit our Volunteer Program page to learn more about volunteering or send us a message to [email protected] to learn more about remote volunteer work options!
The Ohio State University December, 2019
In December of 2019 a group from The Ohio State University came to volunteer with Constru Casa. They spent 1 week building a 3 room house for a family living in a wood and sheet metal home close to Antigua. They had a great week getting to know the family, the masons, and getting to know more about the Guatemalan culture.
Alexandria Gilbert. Verde Valley School, Arizona. (Xepatan Nov 2018)
Happiness. That is what I associate with my experience with Constru Casa. My high school, Verde Valley School, in Arizona, USA had a trip to Guatemala which allowed us to work with Constru Casa. We spent four days building two houses in Xepatan – a small, but beautiful village. As students that come from a well developed and privileged country, we were immediately hit with what poverty really looks like.
Seeing the houses that the two families live in, the cracks in the mud, the tight quarters was shocking. With beautiful views and amazing people to work with, we got to work on the two houses. I remember clearly the smiles on the families faces.
Seeing the children greet us every morning from the top of the trail that we walked down every day warmed all of our hearts. It was not the easiest work, but it certainly was rewarding. From digging trenches, to making our own cement, our fingerprints and sweat is in every inch of the houses we built. Four days was all it took for us to create a safe and sturdy environment which still shocks me. Everyone in that village
was so welcoming and helpful. The families welcomed us with open arms, the little children were there working alongside us the entire time.
Writing this I can still feel the warmth of everyone there. Reflecting on this, I can truly appreciate the experience we had with Constru Casa. Seeing how these four days can really transform two families hearts brings a smile to my face. None of us could ever forget the gift that was given to us through Constru Casa because it truly is the most incredible and rewarding experience. Thank you for everyone involved in building these memories for us… until next time
Sophia Bernhardt, Verde Valley School, Arizona. (Xepatan Nov 2018)
The most meaningful experience for me was working in Xepatan, Guatemala for Constru Casa. We built two houses in 3.5 days for families who did not have stable shelter. This changed my perspective on happiness forever. Playing with the kids and communicating with them in the most unique way was extremely inspiring. Seeing them as happy as they were, while having as little as they do, made me realize that it should not take much to be happy. This experience also made me realize how much change needs to happen in our local communities in the United States. Communities everywhere should be as united and family oriented as this village was.
Gus Muller. Verde Valley School, Arizona. (Xepatan Nov 2018)
My experience in Xepatan, Guatemala building houses was a profound experience. It was something I had never done before, and I was seeing people and living arrangements that I had never witnessed. The people in this town had nothing, but nothing is far more than we can imagine. The people were the most loving and caring people I have ever met. The three and a half days we spent there, changed my view of this country and culture. They may be third world financially, but they are first world in love and care. I think that this experience was absolutely amazing and I plan on returning to Xepatan this summer. Thanks to Keith and all at Constru Casa for planning this and letting us help two wonderful families in need.