J O S H U A H O U S E F U N D
Joshua House Fund (JHF) was created in 1997 in Darien, CT to address the lack of adequate housing for the working poor, primarily in the Appalachian section of Kentucky. Through a unique volunteer experience, Fairfield County parents working alongside their teenage children, raise walls that ultimately become the home of a family
In this poorest of poor regions, where the median household income is $20,972,
This leaky, unsafe structure with no plumbing was home to a family with three young children before the volunteers at JHF built their new home.
This home complete with a wheel chair ramp was built in the spring/summer of 2016 for a family with a disabled child.
many families work hard to better their lives however, they find themselves unable to provide the basic, fundamental right of a safe, functioning home. Living in poverty negatively influences upward mobility for these families and results in the low self-esteem of their children leading to well documented problems of substance abuse and low graduation rates.
JHF provides a literal “foundation” for these families to help them break the cycle of poverty and encourage their children to achieve their full potential. Recipients are grateful to an unimaginable extent. To have a roof that doesn’t leak, running water, safe and reliable heat, and a home that is free of mold is considered a luxury that many families have never experienced.
Our building projects are funded by donations collected through volunteer fund raising efforts, as well as grant awards and corporate matching funds. Parents and their teens from all walks of life are welcome to participate in any of JHF’s building projects regardless of religious beliefs, socioeconomic background, or level of construction skill. The recipient families are selected based on a number of criteria, including need, ownership of a buildable lot with water access and the means and ability to maintain the home.
JHF provides all the building materials, and hires unemployed local builders to supervise the parents and teenagers who travel from Connecticut to the building site. The local crew finishes the houses when the volunteers return home. Each future homeowner is required to participate in the build.
Since our founding, more than 160 teenagers and parents from Fairfield County have participated in the building of 23 homes, primarily in McCreary County, Kentucky.
It is difficult to say whether the greater benefit is achieved in provision of a new home to a family in dire need, or the sense of accomplishment experienced by the teens, who together with the recipient family, share in a life-changing experience.