EMEA Feature

Building homes, one vacation at a time

April 23, 2014

Jean-ChristopheJean-Christophe spends most of his work day developing code. When it came time to planning his vacation this year, he wanted to do something completely different. Yes, no beach vacations or tours to exotic countries. He wanted to give back to the community and support others.

As he was researching for volunteer opportunities, Jean-Christophe was introduced to the Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit organization, by some friends. This opportunity involved traveling to Romania with a team of volunteers to build houses together.

“The concept of Habitat for Humanity is that you give money and time in order to build a house,” Jean-Christophe mentioned. “You pay for your expenses, you pay part of the materials and you give one week of your time.”

Jean-Christophe and a team of volunteers worked with local professionals to put together the foundation of a house in a couple of days.

“It was one of the most fulfilling vacations I’ve ever had,” Jean-Christophe said. “On the last day, we visited one of the families chosen to receive one of these houses. They lived in two rooms with no floors and it was heart wrenching to see people living in such extreme conditions just two hours by flight from where I live. We also had the opportunity to visit some families who received Habitat for Humanity houses 10 years ago and how they’ve benefited from the program. Many of them are now volunteers with Habitat for Humanity so they can help give others a better life.”

Jean-Christophe realized that he received so much more than he gave and he’s looking forward to building more houses next year.