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Emily Heintz joins in El Salvador trip for Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity

August 7, 2014

	Emily Heintz stands in front of a water fountain that was part of the scenery at the resort in which the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity team stayed during their time in El Salvador. 
 FULDA FREE PRESS/Submitted Photo
FULDA FREE PRESS/Submitted Photo
Emily Heintz stands in front of a water fountain that was part of the scenery at the resort in which the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity team stayed during their time in El Salvador.
	Emily Heintz is pictured above with another team member as they apply paint (colors  chosen by the homeowners) to the outside of the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity home. 
 FULDA FREE PRESS/Submitted Photo
FULDA FREE PRESS/Submitted Photo
Emily Heintz is pictured above with another team member as they apply paint (colors chosen by the homeowners) to the outside of the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity home.
   Team members are asked to sign a message on the home. Heintz’s message was “May God Bless Your New Home.” 
 Submitted
Submitted
Team members are asked to sign a message on the home. Heintz’s message was “May God Bless Your New Home.”
  Emily Heintz attempted to carry a water jug on her head just like the women of the region do. They  tie a bandana around their head to help balance the jar.  
 Submitted
Submitted
Emily Heintz attempted to carry a water jug on her head just like the women of the region do. They tie a bandana around their head to help balance the jar.
   A celebration was held toward the end of the week. Emily Heintz is pictured above with her young dancing partner (one of the neighborhood children).  
 Submitted
Submitted
A celebration was held toward the end of the week. Emily Heintz is pictured above with her young dancing partner (one of the neighborhood children).
   Above are the members of the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity team that Emily Heintz was a part of. 
 Submitted
Submitted
Above are the members of the Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity team that Emily Heintz was a part of.
   Part of the work that the team did was to dig a large, deep hole for part of the house’s septic system.  
 Submitted
Submitted
Part of the work that the team did was to dig a large, deep hole for part of the house’s septic system.
By Norma Dittman
Emily Heintz, a fifth and sixth grade teacher at Immanuel Lutheran School, Courtland, MN, was looking for a mission trip opportunity when she learned about Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity. She began looking last December and when she found the information about Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity, she researched the information very thoroughly. Then she told her parents that she would like to go to El Salvador with Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity.

“Thrivent Financial used to be Aid Association for Lutherans until they changed their name a number of years ago,” Heintz explained. “They have global trips that people can join to help build homes for people in need. That is what I did. ”

Heintz’s trip to El Salvador for Thrivent Builds with Habitat for Humanity began with a flight from Minneapolis to Atlanta, Georgia, on July 12th. In Atlanta, she met other members of her team for Habitat for Humanity. From Atlanta, the team landed at the airport in El Salvador.

“There were team members from Missouri, New Jersey, Colorado and many other states. There was myself and one other young man who knew a bit of the Spanish language. We went through customers at the airport together. To communicate, the airport staff would use Google translate. They would type something, Google would translate. When we wanted to talk, we would do the same - ask, and let the translation work,” Heintz described.

Heintz had three years of Spanish while at Fulda High School and one semester of the language during college.

She recalled how it felt to walk out of the airport into the El Salvador climate. “It was like getting into a car after a long day in the heat,” she said. “We stayed at a resort up in the mountain. It was nice and cool although we did not have air conditioning.”

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