On my first visit to Honduras, I returned home an emotional wreck. I had far more questions than answers. In each of the homes we worked in was a picture of the same Jesus that I believe in. Although in a different language, these wonderful people said the same prayers and gave thanks for their food as well.
How was it decided for me to be born in the United States? How was it decided for them to be born in Honduras? TOUGH QUESTIONS! I still do not know the answers, but have to believe that every person can make a difference – wherever they are born. I cannot speak for everyone that has been there, but the people of Honduras have certainly made more of a difference in my life than I have in theirs.
Other Rotarians from Lawrenceburg, Dyersburg, Lewisburg, Madison, AL, and others preceded our trip. The Madison, AL club specializes in the installation of eco-stoves, which will greatly add to the quality of life of Honduran families. Can you imagine building a fire in a clay box, with no chimney to exhaust the smoke? The eco-stove adds a more efficient cooktop to the clay boxes along with a smokestack to the outside. Simple, yet amazing. Here is a photo of a typical stove in a honduran kitchen:
Now, take a look at the improved “eco-stove”
Our group, in addition to Ronnie Strickland who was already there, consisted of eight from Middle Tennessee – Pastor Ann Bassett, Jeremy Bisceglia, Les Bosarge, Keith Clodfelter, Huntly Gordon, Trey Lewis, Zane Martin, and Tom Thomson (aka Boone). Boone is also a professional photographer and his photos will speak more than any written word.
Can you imagine having to live your life in total darkness from sundown to sunrise? Sure there are candles, but the cost of candles would take away from the necessity of food on the table. We saw a few portable generators, but most are only used once a year for special occasions. You are probably asking “how they will pay an electric bill?” We asked the same question.
Honduras is a poor country and only adds infrastructure as it can afford. The government will take the value of what was infrastructure is provided from outside sources and issue a proportional credit to each resident. By the time they ever see an electric bill, there is a good chance their increased quality of life and productivity will absorb it.
Electricity was not our only mission. Pastor Ann Bassett, of Peace Lutheran Church in Spring Hill, held basic English class at the village school. Ann is fluent in Spanish, having grown up in a missionary family in Panama. At the end of the week, each student received a certificate for their efforts.
After school, Ann occupied many of the kids while we were in their homes working.
Here are some other scenes of interest from Honduras:
Well, it looks like there is still enough for another part or two. Thanks for reading!
Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019 direct 615.593.6340. Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, and Spring Hill, Tennessee