You might remember Patrick Staggs from our recent article on Revelation Craft Brewing Company. Well, Patrick is a man that wears many hats. We sat down with him to talk about his side project called Homes of Hope. Homes of Hope is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that takes unwanted shipping containers and turns them into self-sustained homes for those in need.
Homes of Hope started when Patrick’s partner, Lance Manlove, visited the Dominican Republic on a mission trip for his church. Manlove was saddened by the living conditions he witnessed on the trip and, as an engineer, he was implored to do something about what he saw. Staggs was at a leadership summit for his church at the same time. Manlove and Staggs began texting about what they could do to help and that is how Homes of Hope was born.
Homes of Hope partners with a faith-based organization in the Dominican Republic, Empowering Action, that provides education to their congregation and community members. They are of the mindset that it is better to teach a man how to fish than to simply give a man a fish. Homes of Hope provides the housing aspect of this communal education program. This partnership works well for both organizations as Homes of Hope can provide shelter to those that are truly deserving and Abundant Life can select the recipients since they know their congregation the best.
The homes are very thoughtfully designed – focusing on sustainability and low maintenance costs. Each home is outfitted with solar lighting, a water cistern on the roof (to collect and repurpose rainwater), a composting toilet (so no expensive septic systems are needed), and a spot to grow food on the roof. The fascinating part is that once built, the whole shipping container is shipped to the Dominican Republic with the windows and door inside the container. Once it reaches its final destination, the slots for the windows and door are cut out, installed, and voila, you have yourself a house! Surprisingly, a whole house can be built and shipped for only $15,000!
The organization recently delivered its very first Home of Hope to a well-deserving family. The father of the family was an electrician for a local telephone company for 27 years and was injured by a live wire, causing him to lose one of his arms and one of his legs. This made it extremely difficult to find employment and, therefore, support his wife and three children.
When we asked Patrick what could be done to enable Homes of Hope to assist more deserving families, he said that the organization really needs more donors – and not just of the monetary kind. Since 100 people can’t work inside of a shipping container together, the organization really just needs donations of anything that can be used in the construction of the homes: tubing, toilets, sinks, studs, drywall, etc. Those wanting to volunteer their time can follow the organization on Facebook for volunteer dates.
We find it so refreshing to see a member of our community willing to help others in need. Later this summer, the organization will have a model home open next to Revelation Craft Brewing Company for people to tour. Head over to Rehoboth, grab a cold beer, and check out these unique Homes of Hope.