Have you ever thought, “I’ve always wanted to take a mission trip with my family, but don’t know where to start?”

Over the Christmas holidays, our family took a life changing trip to build a home for a family.

The Homes of Hope program, partnered with Companies With a Mission (CWAM) has mobilized business leaders, families, and non-profit groups to build over 4,000 homes for specific families in South and Central America.

Think “Extreme Home Makeovers” meets “Extreme Soul Makeover”.

In 3 days, you can change a family’s life by giving them one of the greatest practical gifts imaginable – a home.  While you’re changing the life of another family, I guarantee this trip will forever impact your own.

Here’s our family’s story of our Homes of Hope trip in pictures…

We arrived in San Diego on Dec. 27th. CWAM arranges a tour bus to pick up everyone at the airport and drive them into Mexico. 

Our kids looking out the window on the bus ride into Rosarito, Mexico

A beautiful sunset on the first night of our arrival. We stayed at the YWAM SD/Baja base in Tijuana. The kids have lots of room - and a lighted sports field - to play safely in the compound.

Within two hours the first wall is up!

Our kids were delighted to hear their new Mexican friends liked Spiderman, too

By the end of day one, the walls and roof are complete

Olivia crashes early back at the YWAM base after a hard days' work. Over 100 people went on this trip - 5 teams of 20 built 5 homes. 

Day 2: Getting tar paper and shingles down for the roof. This spot was beautiful - you can see the Pacific Ocean in the background.

We started framing and drywalling the interior walls. A lead builder coaches each team. No skills required - you learn as you go with excellent guidance and only do tasks you're comfortable with.

Our kids had a blast. They played and worked well with other kids from the neighborhood. No toys, no video games - just an important mission to accomplish and some neighborhood kids to play with and they were the happiest kids in the world.

Jen discovers the biggest Cheeto in the world during a lunch break. They must make them bigger in Mexico

A peek inside the home. Almost finished! We installed a propane stove, assembled a kitchen table and settings, and assembled beds and bedding for the family.

A Home of Hope, almost ready to move in!

We hand Marta and her children the keys to their new house. Earlier, some team members collected money and took her to the store to buy LOTS of groceries. We also gave her a Bible, toys for the kids, and prayed blessings over her family and their new home. It was especially meaningful because the family works with you on the house the whole time and you get to know them. What a powerful moment!

This was one of the simplest, most impacting trips our family has ever taken. Imagine – in three days you build a home for a family, get to know people in a new culture, and make a dramatic impact on your own family.

CWAM and Homes of Hope arrange everything for you. You just sign up, show up in San Diego, and they take care of you from there. 

Check out Companies With A Mission for upcoming builds you can participate in:

Consider taking your own family or a team from your place of work or church. If your experience is like ours, it will change a family’s life and your lives as well.







  1. Mike Chang

    Great Job for Jesus, Fish Family!! Many blessings as you bless others. We love you guys! keep up the great work. Love the Changs!

  2. Leo Lawson

    Erik and Jen, You are modeling for your children a Christmas that gives and not just gets. These missions trips will engrave your children’s souls for kingdom purposes. So proud of your parenting! You are heroes to so many.

    Our admiration, Leo and Pat


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