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Virtual Home Dedication

View Martin & Christine’s virtual home dedication ceremony for Unity House IV – a home sponsored by the faith community in Albuquerque. This home was dedicated on August 22nd.

Habitat for Humanity’s global mission seeks to put God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope.

The faith community has supported Habitat builds for decades – designating funds to pay for construction, volunteering, providing lunches and raising awareness about the need for affordable housing. Unity House IV is made possible through a collaboration of Albuquerque’s diverse community of faith. To learn more or find out how your community can participate contact Habitat’s Faith Relations Committee.

This four bedroom home will cost $126,000 to complete. Donations of any amount are appreciated.

Future Homeowners: Martin and Christine

Martin was just ten years old when he was separated from his parents and was forced to flee to neighboring Tanzania to escape the ethnic conflict that was tearing apart his native country of Burundi, Africa. He spent 12 years living in different refugee camps, where he completed his high school studies and met his wife Christine.

Christine was born in Rwanda from Burundian parents. During the 1994 Rwandan ethnic war, she and her parents left and found exile in Tanzania at a refugee camp where she met Martin.

Martin and Christine arrived in the United States in 2007 under a refugee resettlement program. Today, Martin works as the Project Coordinator and Refugee Community Leader for RWP, a program of the University of New Mexico. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in social work and is currently a candidate for his Masters in Social Work. He is the co-founder and secretary of the Association of Burundian Americans in New Mexico and is a Council Board Member of the Office of Immigrants and Refugees Affairs in the Mayor’s office. Martin is also a member of the Refugee Congress, a national organization supported by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Martin is fluent in Kirundi/Kinyarwanda, Swahili, French and English and serves as Preacher for the Good News Ministry, an evangelical program supported by Saint Timothy Lutheran Church.

Christine attended Central New Mexico Community College to learn English and participated in vocational training organized by Women Global Pathways. During this training, she learned sewing, crochet, jewelry-making and how to open a woman-owned business. Christine is a co-founder and board member of the Association of Burundian Americans in New Mexico and volunteers for the Good News Ministry.

Martin and Christine have been blessed with four children: Ervin Martin, Amity Martin, Daryl Martin and Breilla Martin.

Even though Martin and Christine are Burundian descents, they have never been to that country. The United States is their first home country where they gained citizenship through the naturalization process. “Being selected by Habitat for Humanity is an amazing opportunity to realize our dreams and help our children to feel supported,” said Martin.

Unity House IV dedication

“I have known Martin and Christine since shortly after they arrived in the US in 2007. Martin is a true community leader who has devoted so much of his time and energy to helping the broader African refugee community in Albuquerque. He and Christine are devoted parents and it has been a pleasure to see their family grow. I believe they are perfect candidates for a house through Habitat for Humanity and I know they have the commitment and community support to fulfill their responsibilities.” – Jessica Goodkind, PhD, Associate Professor, UNM

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