Casita Linda, A.C. October 1, 2010
Quarterly Project Report www.casitalinda.org
We just recently completed building our 35th home for the desperately poor living in Central Mexico.
Lorenza and Florencio Nolasco, pictured below with their family, live with their six children in the small Otomi village of San Miguel Viejo. The loss of their former home to a fire left them with only the shell of an abandoned mini-van in which to live.
This past Saturday, September 25, 2010, we had the official turning over of the Nolasco home to the family. Here is a brief summary of Casita Linda’s most recent effort:
1. We built an energy efficient Patsari Cooking Stove that will save Lorenza many hours of searching for wood for her cooking. This stove is 70% more efficient than the open wood-burning fire that typically is used by many rural Mexican families. Additionally, because the cooking fire will be located on the exterior of the home (rather than inside as is often the case), the family will not be breathing smoke (with the resulting high incidence of respiratory disease), as is unfortunately the case for many families. This stove was made possible through a special donation by an individual.
2. We added a solar panel so that when it is dark outside, the children can study at home, instead of under a streetlight. This solar electric system was made possible through a special donation by an individual.
3. There is a skylight in the roof so that the solar charged electrical battery will not have to be used during the daylight hours.
4. This casita also was connected to the municipal water main, which happened to be across the street. Because of the ready access to municipal water, we installed a shower and a flush toilet. We normally are not able to do this because the municipal water supply typically is not available to a property owner in many rural communities.
5. The whole house was wired so the family could, in the future, hook up to the electrical grid if that opportunity becomes available and is affordable for the family.
6. Stairs, as opposed to ladders, were built to give access to the sleeping lofts. This was an added safety feature for the children, several of whom are quite young and would have had difficulty climbing a ladder.
7. We also connected the two sleeping lofts by a wide walkway, providing more living space for the family.
We were able to add a number of atypical features to our latest house (a small solar electric system and a Patsari Cooking Stove) as a result of two special donors who wanted to see these particular items made available to this family. We are not at the present able to include this stove and the solar system as part of the basic home we build. However, we will be trying now to raise enough money to be able to include these items as part of our “basic” home.
We invite you to share your thoughts and ideas with us. How might we further improve the living circumstances of these desperately poor families? Please add a comment to our report, or email your questions and suggestions to us directly: firstname.lastname@example.org
William Greenfield, Executive Director, Casita Linda, A.C., San Miguel de Allende, MX
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