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Holston Habitat recruiting volunteers, contributors for a Global Village trip to Brazil

Sue Guinn Legg • Feb 14, 2020 at 11:52 PM

Holston Habitat for Humanity is recruiting volunteers and gathering donations for what will be its second annual cistern-building mission trip to the rural farm villages of Northern Brazil.

Set for Oct. 11-17, the trip to Caruaru will be a follow-up to a March 2019 trip made in partnership with Johnson City Rotary Club in which three of the life-sustaining cisterns were built and enough contributions gathered to build seven more.

For the rural farm families who live about a half-hour’s drive or a half-day’s walk from Caruaru, the difference the cisterns made was their ability to sustain themselves and their farms during their region’s six-month dry season, a time when many in their region abandon their homes or spend entire days walking to access to water in the closest cities.

Wendy McIlquhan, manager of Johnson City’s Habitat Restore who spearheaded last year’s Global Village trip, said Holston Habitat is excited to continue the work it began in Caruaru in 2019 and to expand on that impact.

A program of Habitat for Humanity International, Global Village engages volunteers in home building and other essential projects in nearly 30 countries. McIlquhan said, “Global Village mission trips like the one Holston Habitat is organizing ... are essential to Habitat’s vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.”

The goal for this year’s trip is to recruit eight to 15 volunteers for the cistern building and to gather enough donations for three to 10 cisterns at a cost of $1,500 each.

Holston Habitat will host an informational meeting about the upcoming trip to Caruaru at 6 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 27, at the Summit Leadership Foundation office at 3104 Hanover Road in Johnson City. Community members and groups interested in learning more about the trip and other Global Village opportunities are encouraged to attend.

In the 35 years since its founding, Holston Habitat has served nearly 300 families locally and more than 270 families globally through its Tithe and Global Village programs.

To learn more about the upcoming trip to Caruaru or other opportunities to serve with Holston Habitat overseas through Global Village, email [email protected] or call the Holston Habitat office at 423-239-7689.

For those who wish to support in the Caruaru mission with a donation, contributions may be made online at https://bit.ly/39yFVZQ.

In a message from Wendy and her husband, Scott, posted at their fundraising page, the couple write: “Most of us take access to clean water for granted, and it's hard to conceive of places where children spend hours each day fetching water for drinking and washing rather than going to school. 

“But now we know, and we also know that the simple addition of a cistern to catch and retain the water from the rainy season can rectify the problem. The decision to pitch in and help is an easy one.

“Our first cistern-building trip to Northeast Brazil in March 2019 was so eye-opening and inspiring that we are planning another trip in October 2020 to bring reliable access to clean water to even more families. Please join us in person, or with a donation.”

If there is a need or a project in your neighborhood the Good Neighbor column can assist with, contact Sue Guinn Legg at 423-722-0538, [email protected] or P.O. Box 1717, Johnson City, TN 37605.

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