"For me, her and the kids, her health. She needs something more stable."

Juanita and Crystal, a mother and daughter, share their inspiring story of conquering numerous hardships to secure an affordable and safe home. With the support of Comal County Habitat for Humanity, their dream of homeownership is becoming a reality. Through this journey their family is able to pave the way for a brighter future for themselves, their children, and future generations to come.

For 30 years, Juanita and Crystal lived in a house that was not structurally sound and had been constructed prior to the 1960s. “Our house was falling apart. We had a lot of plumbing issues and stuff,” Juanita said. Despite their best efforts to maintain the property, it progressively deteriorated, requiring urgent repairs that were beyond their means. Crystal added, “It was just me and my parents forever. When I turned 18 we took in my cousin’s kids and it has just been a process of surviving for us in that house. We didn’t have the money to fix it up, so it just started falling apart even more.”

Juanita first encountered Comal County Habitat for Humanity when her children were young, “One of my cousins has a Habitat home. I had always known about it,” Juanita said. Fast forward several years later, Juanita found herself raising her three nieces and nephews in a house that was teetering on the brink of collapse. Fueled by her deep desire to provide her family with a secure and stable home, she added, ” I decided to apply,” and reached out to Comal County Habitat for Humanity for assistance.

Currently, Juanita and Crystal live in separate apartments. “Right now, I have my apartment with my two boys, and she has her apartment with the girls,” said Crystal. However, the family looks forward to reuniting under one roof once their new home is completed. “It gives us hope for the family. Especially for the kids. Our oldest is 18 and she is living life, but it’s something where she can always come back if she needs to. It’s going to be better,” added Crystal. They eagerly anticipate having space and privacy, something they’ve longed for in their crowded living arrangements.

Beyond the family’s hardships dealing with unstable living conditions, Juanita’s declining health adds another layer of challenges to their already difficult situation. In need of a kidney transplant or dialysis, Juanita’s health struggles underscore the urgency for a stable and comfortable home environment. 

The family has a shared vision for their future home, with each member eagerly anticipating the benefits it will bring. “My son is really looking forward to it. He says, ‘Mom, can we get this?’ and ‘Mom, can we do that?”‘ said Juanita. Crystal envisions a place where the family can gather, while Juanita yarns for an outdoor space to indulge in gardening and barbecues, nurturing togetherness and creating cherished memories. 

Throughout their journey, faith has played an essential role in Juanita and Crystal’s lives. “I believe in God of course, He has gotten me this far.” Juanita said, holding back tears. Juanita’s ultimate motivation is to be there for her children and see them thrive in their new home. Crystal added, “For me, her and the kids, her health. She needs something more stable. The kids are looking forward to having a real house.”

Juanita and Crystal strongly believe that their Habitat home will truly be a game-changer in their lives. With more room for their family to live comfortably, they envision a space that will allow them all to effortlessly navigate and create beautiful memories together. When we asked Juanita and Crystal about their anticipation for their Habitat home, their response echoed with unwavering determination and hope. Crystal added, “We are appreciative of all the help and the volunteers that go into Habitat.”