Meet the Lino Escalante - Martinez Jaco Family

Sonia (38), and Jaco (45), live with their two teenagers in Ahuachapan, El Salvador. Jaco supports the family as a security guard nearby. They live in a small shack that they built themselves on a plot of land they rent for $1.00 a month. The walls are made up of cracked mud, so the nights get very cold and humid, especially during the rainy season. This environment is prime for insects, and they can be seen crawling out of the mud walls. When it rains the sheet metal roof leaks, and water collects in their home.

The two teenagers, Anibal (14), and his sister Selenia, who is in eleventh grade, live in a tiny makeshift room. Selenia dreams of one day becoming a nurse.

Their house has a small, contaminated lagoon right in front, which has become a breeding ground for insects. These insects carry a dangerous infection called Chickungunya. Because of the close proximity to the lagoon, every member of the family has had Chickungunya twice.

They all hope for a clean, safe house where they don’t have to worry about the bugs and getting sick. Selenia says, “I would like to live in a house where I could have my own room and a safe roof”. And the mother, Sonia, says, “If we lived in a community, I would like to have a small beauty shop, I want to learn to cut hair. I am good at polishing nails and at making women beautiful”.