There are times in life, that one thinks that we have been a source to help a person in need. However, it turns out that that person you understand lacks basic things, ends up giving one much more than what one provides to them. Jackeline & Joey, a young couple from the town of Las Piedras located at the East of Puerto Rico, was performing daily errands, when they noticed that at the edge of the road, on a steep slope, a gentleman goes pushing an old shopping cart. Several of his belongings fall to the ground and they stop his car to help him. During their conversation, Don Julio tells them that he lives in a little house seriously affected by Hurricane Maria, which lacks electricity or drinking water. Surprised, they watched as Don Julio mount his belongings in the back of the pick-up and jumps in the back of it so that Jackeline and Joey give him a ride to his residence.
Upon arrival, they discover the deplorable conditions in which this old man lives day by day. While talking about his situation they realized that the very same day was Don Julio 80's birthday. As soon as we learned about this case in Puerto Rico, we proceeded to approve Don Julio to provide him with a Solar Shelter Kit, courtesy of Visible-Good while we made the necessary steps to raise funds and provide him with construction materials and to be able to build his house.
Architecture students from Mexico, Diana, and Andrés from Travelers With a Cause did not hesitate to join the team and designed the plans for what would become the safe and dignified home that Don Julio deserved.
Orlando González, one of the leaders of Naguabo Somos Todos, immediately joined to take charge of the labor and logistics process necessary for the construction of the house. Brother's Brother foundation provided transportation from the US to Puerto Rico and also from our warehouse to Don Julio's property. The foundations of the house, as well as the roof, have already been finished. We are in the phase of placing doors, windows and furnishing his new home.
This experience allowed us to know him better. An extremely hardworking, respectful, friendly man with a sense of humor worth emulating. Don Julio leaves a mark on everyone who had the honor of working hand in hand in this process of rebuilding his home. (Watch Don Julio video).
Thank you to all who contributed to making this possible and especially to you, donor, for your support of our programs and projects, giving us the strength to continue doing our part.
Remember, when driving stay alert on what you see on the road, it might be the gift on your journey.
Sara López, Foundress & CEO