how it all started
What if you could really make a difference in someone else’s life without the risk and expense of travel? What if, instead of just writing a check, you could actually work on a project that would provide long-term help to those in need without ever leaving your hometown?
Those were some of the questions running through Founder Scott Kalevik’s mind after returning from a trip to the West African nation of Liberia in 2004. While in Liberia, Scott witnessed the impoverished lives of people living without the most basic of necessities: things like shelter, medical care, education, and sanitary living conditions. Orphaned and abandoned children were living in impoverished orphanages, each day consumed with the task of survival.
Upon returning from his trip, Scott was feeling desperate to find a way to address the issues he had witnessed. With the help of co-founders Bart Wear and Jack Heimbichner, they developed a simple yet effective idea that allows people who live in relative abundance to help those who live with almost nothing: Homes of Living Hope. The premise of Homes of Living Hope is simple; ship the expertise, resources and willingness of volunteers in the United States with ready-made buildings constructed inside of shipping containers. Homes of Living Hope was established in 2006 and is a registered 501(c)(3) charity.
Homes of Living Hope has partnered with schools, churches, and community volunteer groups in transforming shipping containers and transforming lives. Homes of Living Hope connects volunteers across the United States with international humanitarian aid agencies to produce fully functional container facilities for underserved communities across the world. These aid agencies, which include Life in Abundance International, based in Nairobi, Kenya, and ConeXión Mosaico, based in Mexico City, provide life-giving services such as education, health care, and dental services to populations in great need.
Its very first project in Wyoming connected the New Covenant Christian Church in Wyoming with the Ugandan nonprofit Hope Lives, producing a medical clinic for orphans in the poor village of Aloi, Uganda. Since then, Bridgewater-Raritan High School in New Jersey has built multiple container facilities, including medical clinics and a vocational trade school for Aloi as part of their service-learning curriculum. Generous community members in the town of Louisville, Colorado united to build-out a container into a medical clinic that is providing health services for the highly impoverished settlement of Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya. Another project united Monarch High School in Louisville with the nonprofit ConeXión Mosaico to produce a clinic that provides medical and dental services for a poor community on the outskirts of Mexico City. These facilities may service 250 individuals daily in recipient communities, many of whom have never had access to such necessities.