By God’s grace and through His favor, 2023 was an incredible year for Homes for HOPE. God deserves all the glory for everything we’re rejoicing in as we enter 2024. The following are some highlights from a year unlike any other. But before we get to them, we don’t want to go any further without thanking our incredible partners. Without your multi-faceted investment in this mission, none of this would’ve been possible. Thank you for serving alongside Homes for HOPE in 2023!
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In October 2022, I was visiting The Dominican Republic on a Homes for HOPE Vision Trip to meet some of the incredible people HOPE has the privilege of serving in that beautiful country. I was inspired when I met Oleida who started out with a loan of $140 to open a convenience store more than a decade ago.
We saw God bring hope and restoration to underserved men and women around the world in 2023. Here are just a few of their stories.
In 2010, Small and Micro Enterprise Program (SMEP) Microfinance Bank, a Christ-centered microfinance institution serving families in Kenya, celebrated a major distinction: It became the third deposit-taking microfinance bank in the country to be licensed and regulated by the Central Bank of Kenya. But along with its approval, the central bank issued one caveat: SMEP needed to add investors to its ownership pool. It sounded like a simple request—yet it proved to be anything but.
Homes for HOPE counted it a great joy and privilege to be invited as one of the charities benefitting from Jim Davidson’s Annual Clay Day on October 19th, 2023.
Lancaster, PA, is known for many things, including its Amish community, the oldest farmers market in the US, and the birthplace of the whoopie pie. But did you know that it is also America's refugee capital? Lancaster County takes in 20 times more refugees per capita than the rest of the US. It is also home to a massive number of nonprofit organizations for its size, and it has the highest volunteerism rate in the nation.
Since 1997, HOPE International has focused on serving underserved communities.
Our program leaders have consistently sought out communities at the margins, inspiring a goal in our last strategic plan to serve 10 unreached and underserved communities. Praise be to God who led us above and beyond that goal.
We were honored to have Judah Mooney join us for the launch of the Keystone Custom Homes Homes for HOPE project in North Carolina last month. Judah is the president of Diaconía, HOPE’s microfinance partner in Paraguay. Judah, who is a part-time homebuilder himself, paid his way through college in the United States by framing houses. After college, he felt called to return to Paraguay, the country where he grew up and felt most at home, in order to serve its people. It is not often that our home launches coincide with a field leader's availability, as they are based in the regions where they operate and are rarely stateside. During his time with us, we were privileged to hear stories of transformation from the field.
Keystone Custom Homes' newly acquired division in North Carolina (formerly Evans Coghill Homes) launched their first Homes for HOPE project on a beautiful spring day in Charlotte, North Carolina. Trade partners, suppliers, and service providers gathered in a gorgeous model home with the subtle sound of saws and hammers in the background as homes are going up quickly in the popular, developing community. After a time of connecting around a meal, division president Alan Banks along with HOPE International’s founder, Jeff Rutt and others shared the vision of leveraging the impact of the building industry to invest in the dreams of underserved families around the world.
Earlier this month Keystone Custom Homes held a trade appreciation event to celebrate the resilience, perseverance, excellence, and generosity of their trade partners and suppliers over the past five years. Homes for HOPE had the privilege of attending as well and thanking those in attendance for their sacrificial support of our mission. Utilizing Keystone’s unique Virtual Homes for HOPE Project model, they have generated donations that keep increasing year over year enabling us to serve an ever-growing number of talented entrepreneurs who are living in poverty around the world!