Family builds stoves to help build better lives

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Family builds stoves to help build better lives

The Piggott family played with some of the children in the community that they visited in Guatemala

The Piggott family played with some of the children in the community that they visited in Guatemala

Photo by Photo used with permission of Stephanie Piggott

The Piggott family played with some of the children in the community that they visited in Guatemala

Photo by Photo used with permission of Stephanie Piggott

Photo by Photo used with permission of Stephanie Piggott

The Piggott family played with some of the children in the community that they visited in Guatemala

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While some people spent summer vacations at beaches and in big cities,  this Lake Zurich family decided to spend ten days of their summer doing something to impact the lives of families in another country. 

In late July, the Piggott family traveled to Guatemala to do mission work for an organization called Transformational Journey. Stephanie Piggott, special education teacher, made the trip with her daughter Kaylie Piggott, sophomore, and Kaylie’s older sister Madelyn.

“This year I chose to go on the trip because I was able to go with both my daughters, said Stephanie. “They both kind of fit the age group so it was the first year all three of us could go together.” 

The main goal of the mission was to build wood burning, fuel-efficient stoves for families in Guatemala. The women in Guatemala typically cook over a wood-burning fire which is extremely dangerous for their health according to Stephanie Piggott.

“With the stoves that we built, we were able to put a chimney into the new stoves above the roof so that it would help the women and children with their lungs and respiratory issues.” Stephanie Piggott said. 

While building the stoves itself called for hard work, the Piggott family also faced other challenges with building the new stoves. A mason assisted the Piggott family while working on the stoves but communication proved to be quite difficult as explained by Stephanie Piggott.

 “We were assigned a mason, who was in charge of instructing us how to build the stoves and the mason spoke no English, Stephanie Piggott said. “So it was fun but it was challenging because we had to communicate entirely in Spanish.”

While the Piggott family spent a majority of their time doing the mission work in Guatemala, they were also able to step back and experience the culture of Guatemala as stated by Kaylie Piggott. 

“It was really cool to go and experience a new culture first hand and not just from a tourist point of view, Kaylie Piggott said. “We actually got to go to a village and experience the Guatemalan people’s way of life.”

Even though building the stoves was hard work, it was an opportunity for the family to learn about how different the Guatemalan way of life is compared to the U.S according to Kaylie Piggott. 

“I took away that we are very lucky to be living where we are now because their living circumstances are so much different than ours here in the U.S.” Kaylie Piggott said. 

 

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