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Thank you to everyone who came out to the #BurqueBuild Home Dedication & Celebration on Saturday, August 18th to help us welcome Louis, Orariya and their four children to their first real home.

The Burque Build homeowners, Louis and Orariya, are originally from Africa where they experienced many difficulties due to violence and political struggles. Between 1996 and 2015, their family was stateless, but today they have a life – a life that seemed like a dream only two years ago.

A year ago, when Louis was first selected to become a Habitat homeowner he said, “We have safety, we have a future, we have opportunity and we have goals. A home for my family is the best gift I could ever receive. It is a sad reality, but my children have never known a “home” – something that is ours, somewhere that is safe, and something that we can always come back to. I thank Habitat for Humanity for letting our story continue,” said Louis.

During the dedication ceremony Louis thanked everyone who has helped his family along their path to finding a home saying, “Before living in Albuquerque, we lived in a refugee camp in Tanzania. Every day was a struggle to find work and enough food for our family. We never dreamed we would live in a home like this. We didn’t know what to expect when we arrived here. We didn’t know the culture or the language, we didn’t have much money, we didn’t have a home. Now we are happy and grateful to have a community that helps us. Thank you so much.”

Claude, a junior in high school and the eldest of the four children, was out at the job site every Saturday helping his family earn their sweat equity hours. In his short life, Claude only knew what it was to live in a refugee camp and is so proud of his family’s new home.  “Thanks to everybody who helped us. I never dreamed we would have a house in America, this is something special for me. I say thanks to God who brought us to America. Thanks for all you do for us.”

APD Officer Hence Williams III speaking during the Burque Build dedication

This Burque Build was named in honor of Bernalillo County First Responders as a way to recognize their hard work and sacrifices to ensure safety in our community. This past year, more than 100 cadets from the Albuquerque Police Department volunteered and helped build Louis and Orariya’s new home. On behalf of their support, APD Officer Hence Williams III spoke during the dedication ceremony saying, “One of the focuses of the

Albuquerque Police Department is community oriented policing – we talk about it, we live it, and living it was coming out here and being a part of this. I know class 118 was thankful that we had this opportunity. What we enjoyed more than anything else was the relationships we established. We want to engage in our community. I’m thankful to Habitat for Humanity for giving us this opportunity and for Louis and his family for allowing us to be a part of this build.”

The Burque Build is the 187th home that Greater Albuquerque Habitat for Humanity has dedicated in the past 31 years. Our mission is to build community, one home, one family at a time. We are only able to do this work because of the generosity of so many individual and business who donate their money and time to ensure low-income families can own decent, affordable homes. Together, we are making a difference in people’s lives, in their children’s futures and in the community we love.

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