Providence Homes is proud to partner with New Story to provide 131 new, safe homes for those in need in Nuevo Cuscatlán, El Salvador. Founder and CEO, Bill Cellar, wanted to honor Providence Homes’ 30-year anniversary milestone by giving the gift of homeownership.
When Bill founded the company 30 years ago, he named the business Providence from “God’s caring provision for his people as he guides them in their journey of faith through life, accomplishing his purpose in them.”
Bill believes in using the abilities and strengths as a homebuilder to make a difference in the world. He chose to partner with New Story after doing an on-site visit to El Salvador and seeing the dire need as he visited families and saw how they were often living in very distressed situations. Bill is proud to support New Story and change the lives of families.
New Story and our local partner Gente Ayudando Gente partnered with the city hall to identify the most vulnerable families to be part of this housing project. More than 800 families had applied to the program through the city hall. We created selection committees with members of the city hall and community leaders from each neighborhood to identify the families with the highest needs.
Families now all have cement floors, feel safer in their homes and have decreased health issues. Families are starting businesses out of their homes while more children are able to go to school. Families can now thrive in their homes and have a safe shelter.
Douglas has been working with Michelle Sol (now Minister of Housing in El Salvador) for more than five years since her days as mayor of Nuevo Cuscatlán. He’s been a trusted right hand for a long time, focusing on surveying and communications with families starting with our very first community in El Salvador. Little did we know, as he was working to bring his neighbors into the new housing community, he himself was also living in the same conditions with his family. He never asked to be part of the program or impose himself as a potential beneficiary. But once our partner found out, we surveyed and qualified him into the second phase of the Nuevo Cuscatlán community. He recently shared with Lisselot (executive director of our partner) how happy and excited he is for his new home!!
“My experience working with families through Gente has been beautiful. I have listened to each one of their stories and experiences. It has been very nice to share with them. Working together as a team has been the coolest thing that has happened to me in this project. And now, I feel happy to have a decent, safe house to share with my family and create super special moments as part of this project.
In my current house, where I am living right now, it gets wet there. My house is made of sheet metal, and it is a challenging experience. Every winter, the house will hold water, and everything gets wet and damaged. And now, I'm going to have a decent house, and I feel very happy for my family and my new neighbors. For me, all of the people who will get houses in Nuevo Cuscatlán 2 will be like family, and we will share every day together,” says Douglas.
This past February, Douglas moved into his two-story home in Nuevo Cuscatlán 2. His family is now unpacking their things, and he says he feels right at home. “I’m lucky to have such a beautiful home. When I received the keys — there were no words,” he says. “This is life-changing. I’m very happy.” The big difference for him and his family now that they enter the rainy season is that they will stay dry through every storm, and their things won’t get ruined. This municipality, says Douglas, is at risk for landslides, flooding and even structural damage.
“Now I can sleep through the storms. The wind won’t wake me up, and I won’t have to worry about our metal roof detaching and flying off,” he says. Douglas speaks about looking forward to taking care of the house and their furnishings, which they couldn’t do before. “Everything feels more secure, and I’m grateful that my family is not at risk due to the elements. In the future, I’d love to open a small salon in my home so people can come to get haircuts and more.”