Julia Hunt Memorial Fund
Julia with her people in Los Robles, 2014
Julia Hunt first arrived to Nicaragua in 2014 with some of her best friends in the world. It was a mission trip organized by Decatur Presbyterian Church and HOI which included 5 days of outreach and service in the rural community of Los Robles. This beautiful community of small coffee farms struggles to cover the basic needs of its 2,000 residents. Comunidad Connect is a grass roots organization that provides humanitarian outreach and programs in Los Robles since 2007.
In 2014, CC was building eco-stoves, concrete floors, and water filters for families that had completed community service requirements. This way, families “paid” for the materials and labor through their sweat equity. Julia loved this approach but was concerned about the most vulnerable families that were still falling through cracks – those with loved ones they could not leave at home alone.
Julia urged Comunidad Connect to consider ways to include everyone, especially families that care for home-bound loved ones. After her trip to Nicaragua, CC made a commitment to ensure at least 50% of all Family Impact Projects were dedicated to families with home-bound members due to age and/or disability. Julia and her congregation at Decatur Presbyterian Church raised funds and awareness to support the Los Robles Health Clinic, and returned in 2015 for another week of work and service in Los Robles.
Improved Clean Cook Oven
When Julia passed away in 2017, her friends established the Julia Hunt Memorial Fund dedicated to helping the most vulnerable families of Los Robles by addressing the housing security that alarmed Julia so much on her first visit. Money raised helped launch the Los Robles “Builder’s Guild” that trained local masons and carpenters, and contracted them to improve the living conditions of Los Robles’ most vulnerable families.
Homes For Good beneficiary family
Today, that program is called “Homes For Good” and is building new homes for elderly residents living alone, single mothers, and families with homebound special needs patients. Community service is still alive and well, as neighbors help neighbors build houses and offer community support long after the projects are finished. This is Julia Hunt’s legacy, and Comunidad Connect is proud to have been influenced in such a profound way by such an incredible woman. The homes CC builds cost $2500 each and can be constructed in two weeks from start to finish. See here for recent footage from the Homes For Good program.
Connie and Helen