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2010 Annual Report

Throughout 2010 we traveled many air miles at personal expense putting your contributions to the highest and best use: twice to the Boys' Orphanage-Casa Hogar (Hope House,) in Ixtlahucan, Mexico and as many times to El Cedro, El Salvador and Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

On the trip in March to Hope House we discovered that there were insufficient funds for staff, food, maintenance and medicine. To help wit this crisis we made a contribution of $30,000. We planted an herb garden with the help of the boys, gave hugs all around and promised to return in November. On that visit the orphanage was bulging with young boys and the need for a larger eating area was apparent. Our contribution of $20,000 will help the boys have a larger, nicer place to eat meals. One of our favorites, Mario, found on the streets of Guadalajara, has learned to eat with a fork, although he still prefers using his fingers.

Also in March, Kevin and Patsy went to El Salvador to see the sites of the five new home beneficiaries. Meeting these gentle folk in the mountainous jungles of El Cedro is a lingering memory. One of the recipients, Petrona, a grandmother of many, leaves her house at 5:00 a.m., walks two miles on a dirt road, catches a bus into San Salvador to wash and iron clothes for two families, repeats the travel process returning home at 7:00 p.m. John, Jr. and Dave returned in November to see the finished houses amid much celebration in the community. We left them with scholarship and milk funds for the children and the promise to build ten more houses in 2011.

The Haiti earthquake of January 2010 profundly touched our Foundation. We investigated many charities settliing on Medicines for Humanity as the entity to receive $10,000. They are known for giving the most direct aid at the grass roots in Haiti.

Dave and John join Sor Lidia to visit 13 new home sites. 
April 1, 2008
Having cleared customs at Comolapa air port, Dave and John were met by Erik and Margo, Maryknoll Missioners stationed in San Salvador. Currently they are assigned to assist Sor Lidia in her many programs in the Communities of the poor.
We were driven to our lodgings in Panchimalco where the Sisters of St.Domonic oversee a mountainous guest lodge and conference center. Nxt morning Sor Lidia, Erik and Margo picked us up in the projects 4-wheel drive and off we drove to El Cedro. Roads this trip were fairly good since we beat the rainy season. Where the road ends we walk , or climb..up..then down...then up,,etc.. to three home sites. MOst of the materials have been carried in by the men, women and children of the families receiving a home, helped by several members of the community. Foundation trenching is complete and steel laid ready for cement. All work is supervised by Roselio, a master builder who has been working with Sor Lidia for several years. The foundation crew iof four men, three women,four young men and one young woman are a sight to watch. Their coordination, in such a small space, mixing, watering, carrying, pouring, sloughing the cement in 36 lineal meters of trenching is completed in less than a day ! 
Next day, more up and down to four other home sites where construction  was in the wall building phase. Here Dave showed his building skills (rusty ?) where he laid a course of block with only one or two coorrections from Roselio. The block-crew was smiling all the while but gave Dave a cheerful send off. John was usually looking for a good shady spot to kabitz from.
Third day we visited a far distant site, the village of Rosario de Mora, where four of the homes are to be built. The families here are very poor and distance from others and services are remote. Sor Lidia has been trying to do more here but the additional cost of material delivery, Roselio's time in travel and few to help has stiffeled aid.
Fourth Day, after more..up and ..down we were treated to a wounderful "comedia" of baked chicken, vegies, Papusas ( the Salvadorean staple tortilla) and frescos. Sor Lidia gave a beautiful homily about the solidarity the people have with each other and with those of us who are blessed with the means and opportunity to participate in such a life changing mission.
Fifth Day, final meeting with Erik, Margo and Sor Lidia. Focused on the fact that $ 45,000 (@$3000 per home) is not posssible. Sor Lidia calculates that only 13 homes, now $3460, can be built since material, fuel and delivery costs have risen approximately 12% since our last group of houses built in October of '07. Much love and friendship with our new friends, sad leaving, abrazos all around, peace.
Five Family profiles from El Salvador.
October 05 , 2007
Dominga & Mama Soltera  have two children 7 & 9  and their 66 year old grandmother.  Both children are in school. Dominga works in a maquila and earns $ 175 per month.

Tomas & Felicita Martinez have 10 children from 4 to 22. Seven children are in school. Tomas works as a brick layers helper and earns $ 200 per month. The two oldest sons work as part time workers in community construction.

Jose & Ana Mendez-Martinez have 2 children ages 5 and 2 years. Jose. One of the children is sick and Jose walks with the child to look for health care. He occasionally finds work as a mechanic in structual metals. (no known income)

Pedro & Demecia Ramos have 5 children ages 3 to 20. Three children are in school. Pedro works as a construction laborer and sometimes makes $ 180 per month. His oldest son sometimes works with him.

Cayetana Santos is a widower, her husband was killed three years ago.
She has 6 children, ages 7 to 17. All the children are in school. The two oldest girls are much help to their mother. Cayetana works in the campo at whatever work she finds. Many persons in the community help the family which is very poor and have many problems.

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