Representatives from Joint Task Force-Bravo pause for a photo in front of one of the houses they helped construct over five weeks after the ribbon cutting ceremony November 28, 2012. More than 100 servicemembers volunteered time to build 14 houses in the community of Cane, Honduras near Soto Cano Air Base.(U.S. Air Force photo/Capt. Rebecca Heyse)
A priest blesses a home during the ribbon cutting ceremony November 28, 2012 for 61 new homes in the community of Cane as the Mayor of Cane, Jose Rosario Tejeda, looks on. More than 100 servicemembers volunteered time to build 14 houses in the community of Cane, Honduras near Soto Cano Air Base.U.S. Air Force photo/Capt. Rebecca Heyse)
Colonel Guy LeMire, Joint Task Force-Bravo commander, listens alongside Mayor Jose Rosario Tejeda and two nongovernmental agency leaders during the ribbon cutting ceremony November 28, 2012 for homes for 61 families in the community of Cane. (U.S. Air Force photo/Capt. Rebecca Heyse)
12/19/2012 - SOTO CANO AIR BASE, Honduras -- More than 100 Joint Task Force-Bravo servicemembers partnered with non-governmental organizations and the city of Cane, Honduras to construct 61 new homes for families in the community.
The Mayor of Cane, Jose Rosario Tejada reached out to JTF-B for help building the final 14 homes for the community. With a history of service with the regional Habitat for Humanity housing projects, the 612th Air Base Squadron was happy to take the lead to build the homes.
The five week project is the latest in the ongoing outreach efforts by members of JTF-B to help strengthen the relationship with and give back to the communities near Soto Cano Air Base.
"The interaction of the servicemembers and the community helps build and strengthen the relationship with the base and the local community," said Iris Medina, JTF-B Civil-Military Operations liaison.
Construction began October 27, 2012 with JTF-B volunteers working hand-in hand with Honduran volunteers each Saturday. The volunteers did everything from moving bricks by hand to each new home lot, to building retaining walls and painting the homes.
"Each week we talked with the project foreman and took over where the Hondurans left off," said Staff Sgt. Elizabeth Terrazas, Noncommissioned Officer in charge personnel section, 612th Air Base Squadron.
The volunteers had the opportunity to not only work with the community of Cane but also with the families who would be received the homes.
"We worked alongside the families who would be receiving the homes," said Terrazas. "The families were ecstatic. For some, the homes gave them a roof over their heads."
The dedicated work of the volunteers and community members was celebrated with a ribbon-cutting ceremony during which the 61 families received the keys to their new homes. Also, during the ceremony Mayor Tejada presented JTF-B with a plaque commemorating the hard work and dedication of the servicemembers.