After being selected for the Habitat Tucson homeownership program, Elisa and Alfredo Paz quickly completed their required hours of sweat equity. When they chose their lot for their home — Habitat Tucson’s 400th house — the Paz Family made a commitment to continue to work on the homes of their neighbors.
Most weekends, the family can be found working alongside Habitat volunteers and supporters. The family has now contributed over 1,000 hours of “sweat equity” at Habitat Tucson — double their requirement for homeownership.
They are excited to become the proud owners of Habitat Tucson’s 400th home.
Elisa and Alfredo Paz called Bullhead City, Ariz. home until they decided to pursue opportunities for education and work in Tucson. The move was a risk for all of them, as they knew that they very literally would be starting again from nothing — no jobs and no place to call home. Yet, they still packed up and hit the road to Tucson.
Settling in to Tucson wasn’t easy. The couple and their teenaged children struggled and overcome obstacles together, but still lacked a permanent residence. The family lives in a cramped trailer. They experience extreme heat in the summer and bone-chilling cold in the winter.
One day, the Paz’s eldest daughter came home and explained that her friend’s family had just moved into a Habitat Tucson home. She urged her parents to apply, and it wasn’t long before the family was approved for a home of their own.
“For us, this is a blessing,” said Elisa, who said she couldn’t contain her excitement upon finding out her family would have their own home. “Every morning, I wake up and imagine that I am in the new home.”
The Paz family looks forward to having more space for everyone, and to enjoy the freedoms that owning a home offer.
The Paz family added that they are glad to give back to the community and plan to continue volunteering with Habitat Tucson after their move-in date.
“I’m learning how to build a home,” Elisa said excitedly. “I like what Habitat does. Habitat has a really big heart.”