Sarah Reddinger, Director of Program Services, Habitat for Humanity Metro Maryland recently led a global village trip to Armenia. Here is an excerpt from her journey:

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Smbat and Lida acquired their house in the late 1960s. As they raised their son and two daughters (now ages 20, 17, and 14), they frequently made renovations. While they were able to convert extra space into a kitchen and bathroom, and create a two-bedroom addition, there were projects too big to finish. Their roof was one of these big projects that became worse and unsafe as time went on. Supporting the family by raising crops and cows, it was tough to make ends meet while allowing room in their budget for home improvement. The family learned about Habitat for Humanity Armenia, and were amazed that a team would come to restore their walls and ceilings, repaint doors and flooring, and fix their roof. Smbat said, “I can’t believe that this is the case. Why would anyone travel all that distance to help someone they do not know and probably will never speak to again. But it is true and we got selected.  We are so very happy that this is happening. Now we are going to be able to complete our roof and complete the bedroom we have been putting off because of the amount of work it will take. The Habitat team is coming here and they will perform the labor to finish our house of 50 some years.”

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Sarah brought a team to the home which is located in a small village called Sers in the region of Vayots Dzor (Southern Armenia). This team consisted of 10 people from across the US: Maryland, Georgia, California, Florida, Nebraska, and Hawaii. They patched interior walls, which were made of mud and straw, hung and finished drywall, then plastered the walls in preparation for painting. Sarah comments, “This family was just so unbelievably generous and welcoming. They seem to live each moment with such joy, they taught me a lot about community and reminded me to just enjoy life.”

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