When families migrated from the rural interior of Mexico to the northern border in search of better living conditions, not only were there no jobs but there was no housing. Houses in the northern cities were often no more than a cardboard or scrap wood.

The floors were dirt floors, which turned to mud in the frequent downpours in Matamoros’ tropical climate. These conditions can be life threatening for the young, elderly and sick. And the need is constant. As the population along the border continues to swell, existing colonias become increasingly crowded and new colonias form in response.

With volunteer groups and a local Matamoros construction crew, we build small homes of wood and cinder block, raised well above the level of the flooding that happens every time rains. Often times, persons living with disabilities or illnesses need small improvement to dramatically improve their quality of life. Wheelchair ramps, concrete pathways and similar improvements can ease the burden of a family caring for an individual lacking mobility.

New construction, with a concrete floors and new materials, can create a healthier environment for a person suffering from burns or wounds caused by untreated diabetes.