Orange County Branch Newsletter

December 2013


YMF - Corazon Home Building

By Rafael Contreras

On November 23, 2013, ASCE OC YMF members got the opportunity to “Build a House in a Day”, a Corazon program that helps low income families in northern Mexico to get a house. Corazon is a Santa Ana based nonprofit organization that is always in the search for volunteers to help them in this beautiful cause and give back to the community. ASCE members carpooled with the Corazon staff and other volunteers down to the humble Mexican community of Cerro Azul, located approximately one hour south east of San Diego. The predetermined site contained all the necessary materials needed to build the home. Lead volunteers organize and instruct the group throughout the process, making sure everyone was safe and coordinating how the labor was being performed. It was amazing to see such a great turnout and to be joined by people from all ages and families who came out to help make a family’s life better.

The work can be strenuous at times, there’s a lot of painting, nailing, and lifting, but ultimately it is deeply rewarding. As the day wears on, volunteers see the progress as the house begins to take shape. Faming walls leads to installing the roof which then leads to the placing of the roof shingles. By the end of the day, the crew of about 45 volunteers built a three-room, 16-foot by 20-foot house. A sense of accomplishment is reward enough for the volunteers. To finalize the project, the Corazon staff conducts the closing ceremony to give the family the keys turning this house into a home.

For more information regarding volunteering for Corazon please visit their website:

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