Meet the Idalma Family

Love and harmony are plenty in this family's tiny shack, even though resources are scarce. Geson and Idalma are a couple that both work in a textile factory operating sewing machines. They do not make enough to move out of their dangerous shanty town in Nuevo Cuzcatlan, El Salvador.

Despite the family's perilous situation they remain hopeful because they have to - the life of their 1 year old daughter, Nicole, hangs in the balance. The family's decrepit shack is made of rusty metal sheets, plastic, and wooden sticks. The house has gaps between the metal sheets, no door, and a dirt floor. The family is exposed to the rains, winds, and humidity. Their floors turn to mud and swarms of mosquitoes invade the house. The mosquitoes are especially dangerous because they often carry dengue fever and chikungunya. Baby Nicole has already contracted Chikungunya which can cause lifetime joint swelling and pain. She often gets sick with colds and diarrhea due to the unsanitary conditions. A home with a cement floor, insulation, and impenetrable walls will help immensely. The house has no running water and accessing it daily is a difficult task. The family trudges long distances every day to lug buckets of water back home.

In the New Story community, families will live in a home built to withstand local natural disasters. Homes will have running water and plumbing, which contributes to improved health and hours saved from having to collect and carry water. The new community is located about 10 minutes away from their current slum, so families are removed from their dangerous circumstances, but still have access to their jobs and schools. Parks placed throughout the new town will give children a safe place to play, and parents a space to congregate and build community. Geson and Idalma's dream is to own a decent home where Nicole can grow up in a safe and healthy environment, no longer getting unnecessarily sick as a result of her environment.