On Jan. 7, Hockaday and St. Mark’s students embarked on the schools’ fifth build with Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit cooperation that sponsors projects worldwide to address the issues of poverty housing. Continuing for eight consecutive Saturdays throughout the January and February, the Hockaday and St. Mark’s jointly sponsored build will benefit the Zamarripa Family, which will purchase the house for at the end of the build for a reduced price with a zero interest loan.
Juan and Irma Zamarripa, both from Durango, Mexico, have lived in the United States for 24 and 10 years respectively. Their oldest son, Julio, is 18 years old and attends TWU. Their daughters, Paula, 15 and Irma, 13, are excited to move into their new house because of the increased privacy and space it will offer compared to their current one bedroom apartment, which is located in a dangerous neighborhood. The Zamarripa family is close nit and enjoys spending time together on the weekends.
Hockaday Habitat for Humanity Project Co-head senior Catherine encourages students to participate in the build because she believes it is an exceptionally gratifying form of community service.
“You see the build site go from a concrete slab on the ground to someone’s home,” she said. “I also love that the family builds along with you, so you really get to know the family. Also, the families from the past builds come over and help, so it’s really a neighborhood effort. It’s nice to see your work and a plan come to fruition.”
Sign-up sheets for the Habitat for Humanity project are located on the community service board in the downstairs Upper School hallway. Build sessions will take place every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m until the home dedication on Mar. 3.