The Fuller Center for Housing began work in Haiti three years ago to help families recover from the devastating Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake. Since then, 111 permanent Fuller Center homes have gone up in the poverty-stricken nation.
The number of new home builds increases each year as The Fuller Center is committed to long-term recovery in Haiti — a country that has long been the poorest in the Western Hemisphere. That poverty has contributed to health issues, educational woes, sanitation problems, hunger and inadequate and unsafe housing.
While the earthquake may have brought The Fuller Center to Haiti, it won’t be leaving just because public attention and media spotlights have turned to other stories. The Fuller Center is there for the long haul.
Of course, The Fuller Center cannot be there for the long haul without the support of donors, volunteers and partners. One partner that has stepped forward in a huge way is the United Church of Christ. Earlier in 2013, 10 Fuller Center homes were completed in Croix-des-Bouquets thanks to a $50,000 UCC grant.
Pleased with the results of that effort, the UCC has now agreed to give The Fuller Center another $114,000 to build 20 more homes in Haiti — 18 in the Croix-des-Bouquets area with The Fuller Center’s Homes from the Heart partner and two in Lambi with The Fuller Center’s other main building partner in Haiti, Grace International. The grant money also will help fund the installation of 18 latrines for the Croix-des-Bouquet homes.
“Everyone involved is super excited to be continuing our partnership with the UCC,” Fuller Center Director of International Field Operations Ryan Iafigliola said. “Although our direct linkage is through the UCC’s headquarters, we know that we’re being stewards of resources contributed by generous individuals and churches across the country. All those who have given can be confident their money is helping to make a real difference in the lives of Haitians as we build safe, healthy and attractive homes.”
"The United Church of Christ is so grateful for our expanding partnership with The Fuller Center for Housing and the people of Haiti," said Susan Sanders, the UCC’s Minister for Global Sharing of Resources. "The first 10 houses we worked on together are now providing shelter with dignity for 10 families. Moving forward with an additional 20 houses is exciting. We look forward to our continuing relationship."
Fuller Center Director of U.S. Field Operations Kirk Lyman-Barner has seen the UCC step up to be one of the major supporters of The Fuller Center’s Superstorm Sandy recovery work in Atlantic City, N.J. The UCC’s support is doubly fulfilling for Lyman-Barner because he also is a UCC pastor.
“Having both feet planted in the United Church of Christ and The Fuller Center for Housing, I’m constantly amazed by the harmony of their ecumenical missions,” he said. “As a pastor, I’m delighted our denomination has continued its relationship with the global affordable housing ministry.
“As The Fuller Center’s Director of U.S. Field Operations, I’m constantly reminded of the simplicity and power of the covenant agreement model that we use with our partners in the field,” he added. “The UCC uses a similar covenant with their congregations. That the UCC and The Fuller Center for Housing have a long history of partnerships is not a coincidence because Millard Fuller grew up in a UCC church. So it is not surprising to me at all that the UCC has supported our recovery efforts in Haiti and Atlantic City. Our Christian friends are called to help one another when there is a need.”
Help us put this grant to work in Haiti by joining a Global Builders trip! There are 12 Global Builders trips heading to Haiti in the next eight months, and three teams are still accepting volunteers. Click here to learn about upcoming trips or to propose one of your own.