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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

to harbor the harborless

"Closer to God... Can Building a House Get You There?"

so goes the teaser on the cover of the may 2007 issue of LA yoga i picked up today. the subheading, "Habitat for Humanity and Rumi-er Homes Too!" gives the casual browser a better idea of the content of the cover article, which, coincidentally, ties in with the topic of my post yesterday, i.e., my participation in city yoga's upcoming fundraiser for H4H.

according to the article, gimme shelter, the author highlights one of the many proud owners of a habitat home, nicolas enriquez.

with his meager earnings, enriquez could only afford a one-bedroom mobile home, which was tight quarters for him, his wife, and their twin daughters. however, once he heard about the habitat for humanity project going up in his neighborhood, he filled out an application and was approved for one of the houses. this new home was no handout, by any means. besides having to qualify for a nominal mortgage loan, enriquez was also expected to put in at least 500 hours of sweat equity. in other words, he had to help with tasks such as foundation laying, framing, and painting of his home as well as of other homes in the project. by the time the enriquez family had moved into their new three-bedroom home, nicolas had voluntarily put in over 3,000 hours of manual labor; by doing so, not only did he make his own dream come true, but also that of other families just like his.

the thought of joining a habitat for humanity work group has always sounded appealing to me. even if the thought of my wielding a saw, a nail gun, or a hammer sounds like an accident waiting to happen, i know there must be something i can do. like install doorknobs or paint a wall. i know that someday i'll get the chance to test my construction skills, but until then, the best i can do right now is to help raise funds to keep these projects going. hence, the yogathon in june.

besides, my trying to do a series of sun salutations at sunrise after being up all night sounds less hazardous than my falling off a ladder or having a mishap with a power tool!

2 Comments:

Anonymous Jane said...

Hi there Joni!

I am truly amazed that despite your distance from our native Philippines, you still get yourself involved in H4H projects for Third World countries.

In yoga, we learn to go beyond just the asanas but to give back a part of ourselves to the community and make this world a better place.

You sure are one of them!

Nookie (Marc) says he will be in town in a few months. Looking forward to meeting him. Hope to someday meet you in person!

1:13 AM  
Blogger joni said...

who knows, jane.. maybe i'll get to meet you the next time i visit my family in the philippines :)

1:04 AM  

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