June 12, 2021
The Comal County Home Repair Program covers repairs in three categories: Weatherization, Aging in Place, and A Brush With Kindness. Most of the projects our team works on fall under one of these categories but more and more we are coming across projects that span all three! We recently had the opportunity to sit down with a homeowner for one of these projects and talk about her experience.
Joanne didn’t know about the Comal Habitat Repair Program until she saw a flyer at the Westside Community Center. At first, she thought it was a mistake because Habitat builds houses, but then she decided to take a chance and call because she needed her house repaired.
“This had been a prayer of mine for years. I don’t know when it's gonna happen. I don't know how, but I know it's gonna happen. And when I saw that flyer there (at the Westside Community Center) I thought, there's my answer. There was my answered prayer.”
A majority of the work was completed on the exterior of the house. After removing the existing siding (including asbestos removal), removing and replacing the roof trim, leveling the foundation, replacing (11) original windows, and repairing brickwork. After all of this was complete, our construction team painted the entire exterior of the house.
“Deedee was patient with me because I did change my mind, I don't know how many times. Probably, three or four times, about the paint, I said ‘Don't buy it yet because I'm not sure yet I changed my mind again!’” Joanne explained. But we assured her, the number of times she changed her mind didn’t matter, the most important part of this project was that she was happy with the work.
The team also replaced several interior doors, as well as her exterior front and back doors. New light fixtures were installed by each of the exterior doors. Joanne explained how safety was a concern before these repairs were complete, “Before then, I was having trouble with the door because the house was not leveled. So, the door did not lock. So I had to push the sofa against the door at night. And I would put a bat, under the knob, just to feel safe, so that I could sleep comfortable because my door wouldn't, there were times when it would lock, times when it didn’t lock. Most of the time it didn't lock.”
At Habitat for Humanity we strive to build safe and affordable housing for those in our communities. Through the repair program, Joanne is now able to live in a safe home where she doesn’t have to worry about her front door locking, or drafty old windows. The program was able to do this work at an affordable cost to her through the use of grants and sponsorships from our generous donors.
“(When) one of the guys said that they were going to show up, they would show up. I felt very comfortable with all the guys, each and every one of them.” Joanne continued, “Tony was so kind, I said ‘Here's the key I'm gonna be home late today.’ and he will leave the light on for me. They went far beyond to make my home look very nice.”
If you know of someone in Comal County who is in need of repairs, please visit our website to review the program qualifications: https://www.comalhabitat.org/programs/home-repair-program.
If you would like to help those in our community obtain safe and affordable housing, please consider donating to Habitat for Humanity: https://www.comalhabitat.org/support-us/how-donate
May 28, 2021
A one year builder’s warranty is provided to all of our Habitat families after their home is complete and they officially become homeowners. Six months after moving in we meet with our families to walk through the home and see if there are any issues or repairs that need to be addressed. We recently met up with Habitat homeowner Tina for her 6 month check in and sat down to see how she was navigating homeownership.
Tina is a first time homeowner so we asked her to tell us how she feels about owning a home of her own. “I love it! I’ve been blessed. I have a lot of compliments. A lot of people still come by and tell me ‘Your house is beautiful, they did an awesome job’.” She took us on a tour of her home, showing us how she has decorated. In each room you can see that the tiniest details have been considered. She has been hanging up pictures and laying rugs, paying extra attention to make her home feel comfy.
When asked what she liked most about her new home, Tina thought back on her previous home and how different it was. “I’m warm. I have air conditioning, I have a heater and I never had one. All those years I used my stove for a heater. It’s very exciting, it’s something new to me. Sometimes I just sit here and I look at it. It really happened, it came to reality. It came true and I love it.”
While heat and air conditioning are certainly important, sometimes it’s the little things that can make a house feel like a home. “I love saying I’m coming home! I love it, especially my doorbell.” Tina explains, “I never had a doorbell. People come and they knock and I say Don’t you know I have a doorbell? Let me shut (the door) and we’ll do it again.”
If you would like to learn more about Tina’s family story and her journey to homeownership, you can read her story here: https://www.comalhabitat.org/construction/tinas-family-home
February 03, 2021
When a Habitat family gets the keys to their home and are officially homeowners, their story is only just beginning! There are so many people involved with the home building process and it can take years before we get to the final home closing date. All of our volunteers, sponsors, donors and community supporters want to know how the families are doing in their Habitat home! We regularly connect with our families to discuss general house related issues, but every so often we reach out to get updates about their family.
We recently met with one of our homeowners, Stephenie, who closed on her home just one year ago. When asked to describe how her life had changed over this past year since becoming a homeowner, she said “Our lives have changed for the best of course. It is almost impossible to describe in words how we are feeling. It's a relief knowing we have a place to come home to. There's peace and comfort under this roof and everyday is like a dream.”
Stephenie lives in her home with her son, Nicholas, and even though they have lived in their home for only one year, together they have made some great memories! “My favorite memory is watching Nicholas' virtual high school graduation class of 2020 in our own home. He was all dressed up in his cap and gown. I decorated the house, and we celebrated as he walked across the living room. It was so much fun and we all laughed and cried our happy tears!”
For Nicholas, his favorite memory was their first night in the home. “We got the keys that day and packed up some belongings to sleep over.” Stephenie went on to say “Nicholas camped out in his tent in the living room while I was in my room on an air mattress. We were super excited and had a great time!”
The word “home” can have many different meanings for families. It could be a physical dwelling, or it could be a feeling you get when you’re with your loved ones. We always ask our Habitat families what home means to them. For Stephenie “Home, means we belong.”
February 03, 2021
Comal County Habitat for Humanity celebrated the construction of its 50th home via a Facebook Live dedication ceremony Saturday, January 23rd, 2021 at 1520 West Mill Street in New Braunfels. The new homeowners, Benito, Hortencia, and family, were present along with Habitat home sponsors Pat and Becky Wiggins, the family's close friend Eugene Cervantes, and Comal County Habitat staff members.
Due to COVID-19 social distancing regulations, Benito and Hortencia’s Habitat home dedication was streamed online via a Facebook Live event for volunteers, donors and friends to watch from the safety of their homes.
The program started with Comal County Habitat Executive Director Crystal Moore giving an introduction explaining what a home dedication means. “We’re dedicating this home to the blessing of the family and also to further do God’s work as that’s what has brought us here today.”
All attendees moved inside the newly built Habitat home where the program continued with Eugene Cervantes speaking about his friendship with Benito. “I’ve known him for a few years and I’ve come to learn a lot from him. He’s a man of honor. He’s a man of humility, a man of commitment. I’ve never met anybody like him.”
He went on to speak about Benito’s love for his family and concluded with “I am blessed to be here. On behalf of the family we extend our gratitude to Habitat for Humanity. It is an honor and a privilege to become a homeowner. And I thank you for being able to make this dream a reality for my friend.”
Crystal Moore continued by thanking all of the many sponsors who have been long time donors to Comal County Habitat, and to those who donated directly to this family.
Sponsors for the home include McKenna Foundation, Wells Fargo, Tim Pate and Kathy Mulholland, Gordon and Virgina Hughes, Dan and Brenda Chapman, the City of New Braunfels, U.S. Department of HUD, Najim Family Foundation, FHL Bank Dallas, Lowes, BBVA Compass, Downtown Rotary Club of New Braunfels, La Cosecha, Comal County Women Build, CenterPoint Energy, Broadway Bank, and Comal County Habitat for Humanity ReStore.
Along with Comal County Habitat’s regular construction volunteers who worked over 1,000 hours on this project, there were also several volunteer groups who were an integral part of the building of this Habitat home. Those groups include Comal County Women Build, St. Peter & Pauls Men’s ACTS, New Braunfels Presbyterian Church, Tree of Life Church, Texas Army National Guard, Hope Hospice, NetWorth Realty of New Braunfels, Aflac Texas South Showtime Service Squad, Texas State ROTC, New Braunfels Rotary Club, Texas State University and Byron P. Steele II High School.
Benito took a few minutes to say thank you to all who were involved with this home build. “Thank you everybody for coming. I’m very excited that I have a home. Thank you for this opportunity for me and my family. I’m very happy because my life is changing.”
To end the program Pat and Becky Wiggins, who have employed Benito for the past 11 years at McAdoo’s Seafood Company in New Braunfels, handed a ceremonial key to the family. “We would like to thank all of Habitat for Humanity and all of the volunteers that have helped Benito with this house and all of the contributors that contributed to the house as well. We would like everybody to know that Benito started when we opened McAdoo's 11 ½ years ago and he’s a principal part of the McAdoo’s family. And Benito’s dependability and talent is unsurpassed by anybody else.” Pat closed his remarks thanking Benito for his continued hard work as an employee. “He gets there early in the morning and has prepped everything ready for the entire day, 5-6 days a week. He’s part of the McAdoo's family and we feel like we’ve built McAdoo’s around people like Benito. Congratulations and we really appreciate everything you've done for us.”
This home was Comal County Habitat’s 50th build since its incorporation in 1993. With the continued support of volunteers, sponsors, and donors Comal County Habitat is able to provide decent and affordable housing to this family and many others within the community.
To help Comal County Habitat for Humanity build more homes, please call (830) 625-4025 or visit www.comalhabitat.org.
December 03, 2020
NEW BRAUNFELS, TX – Comal County Habitat for Humanity Homeowners Tammy and Chris Pruess made their final mortgage payment on their Habitat home in July 2020. This milestone accomplishment was celebrated with a private mortgage-burning ceremony, tradition among Habitat homeowners when they pay off their home.
Comal County Habitat’s Communications Manager, Alan Rubiola, interviewed Tammy, Chris and their children Sarah, Audrey and John to discuss how their Habitat home has impacted their family. “[Our previous home] was a substandard house that we were living in,” said Chris. “We had three children in a two bedroom, one bath mobile home.” Tammy noted that moving into their new Habitat home was a vast improvement from their previous home, “[Sarah and Audrey] had their own room, Jonathan had his own room, [we had] a safe place for them to play… it was a big difference.”
When asked about her favorite memories from growing up in her family home, Audrey said “I would definitely say holidays like birthdays, Christmas [and] seeing how many people we could fit [in our home].” Sarah agreed, and lamented on Christmas memories. For John, his favorite memories were playing in the backyard, something he couldn’t do in their previous home.
Chris, on what he would say to any family considering applying to build a home with Habitat, says “Go for it… Have a goal set and dedicate yourself to it. Stay with the program.” Tammy agreed, adding “[Comal County] Habitat is a great program to be with.”
June 10, 2020
Comal County Habitat for Humanity hosts online dedication ceremony
Comal County Habitat for Humanity celebrated the construction of its 49th home via a Facebook Live dedication ceremony on Saturday, June 6th at 1849 Michigan Street in New Braunfels. The new homeowner, Tina, thanked all those who worked so hard to help her reach this goal.
Sponsors for the home include McKenna Foundation, TCOR Management, Stud-A-Thon community partners, Dan and Brenda Chapman, the City of New Braunfels (Community Development Block grant), New Braunfels Rotary Club, a donation made in memory of Marion Ammann, the Najim Family Foundation, Scott and Toni Brothers and Senior Flexonics Pathway.
Construction gift-in-kind partners for Tina’s home include: Hill Country Insulation, Kidd Roofing, Keystone Concrete, Kohler, Whirlpool, Picasso Touch Painting Contractor, and Schneider Electric.
The home took over 500 volunteer hours to complete with the help of 15 volunteer groups from local businesses and organizations.
Due to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines, Comal County Habitat for Humanity held Tina’s Habitat home dedication online and streamed the event through Facebook Live for volunteers, donors and Habitat friends to watch from the safety of their homes.
Tina’s daughter, Candy, spoke of her mom’s incredible strength and determination.
“My mom has worked her entire life to make sure we were taken care of. I remember my mom working first, second and third shift at Coleman Company for many years to make ends meet. She never asked for any help and never received any kind of assistance. I could see the stress and fatigue on her face, but my mom never gave up,” said Candy. “After Mom’s approval into the Habitat Home Program, her whole outlook changed. She had something to look forward to. She had hope again.”
Candy continued by highlighting the hard work her mom put forth throughout Comal County Habitat’s Home Program.
“Receiving a Habitat home is not free. There is a lot of work and commitment involved. Mom stepped up with determination and dedication. She looked forward to getting up every day. Over the last two years my mom has worked in the ReStore 2-3 days a week, and when construction started she was at the build site Thursdays and Saturdays,” Candy said. “With her hard work and help from family, my mom exceeded the (program-required) 350 hours - she has now almost 600 hours in total sweat equity. Today we celebrate the hard work that has gone into helping my mom have a beautiful home and a bright future.”
Shortly after Candy’s speech, Habitat Homeowner Tina spoke to supporters watching online.
“It may not be enough, but all I can say is thank you - from the bottom of my heart, with everything I have, thank you. Habitat’s mission has given me strength and helped me to dream about my future and find hope again,” Tina said. “I am no longer going to worry about hot summers or cold winters ever again. I look forward to having restful nights, beautiful days and family gatherings in my new home. I am blessed beyond my wildest dreams. I am happy, forever grateful for everything and everyone. I am home.”
In addition to the Facebook Live streaming of the event, Comal County Habitat for Humanity posted a video of Tina touring her new home for audiences to view on Facebook.
Through donations of money, materials, construction services and volunteer labor, Comal County Habitat for Humanity was able to build the home and sell it at an affordable price. Tina purchased the home with a no-profit loan, and her monthly mortgage payments will be used to build more Habitat houses in our community.
To help Comal County Habitat for Humanity build more homes, please call (830) 625-4025 or visit www.comalhabitat.org. To view the dedication ceremony and home tour, please visit facebook.com/comalcountyhabitat.
April 15, 2020
12 women of diverse backgrounds came together to build a local family's Habitat home in March.
Founded in 2010, Comal County Women Build (CCWB) is a Comal County Habitat for Humanity-based committee of diverse women aged 21 – 75, all from various backgrounds and professions. One major thing ties the women together as a group – their belief and support of the impact of affordable housing in our community.
“Women Build empowers women in our community by giving them a voice through their actions,” said CCWB Vice President Melanie Ramirez.
“For example, one of the main reasons why Women Build stands out from so many other women’s groups is that we get to build. I think that’s one of the most empowering things about Women Build,” Ramirez added.
An example of that empowerment comes from the unique mother-daughter team that have been members of the committee for years now.
“Women Build has made my bond with my daughter stronger by volunteering together,” said Denise Farias, CCWB President. “As a team, we have worked on 5 Habitat builds over the last 4 years.”
In honor of International Women’s Day (Sunday, March 8th) and National Women Build Week, Lowe’s partnered with Habitat for Humanity International to provide grants of $5,000 in order to expand and strengthen the relationships between area Lowe’s stores and Habitat for Humanity chapters.
This year, Lowe’s awarded Comal County Women Build a $5,000 grant in support of their efforts during National Women Build Week. The grant will be used to purchase building materials for Benito and Hortencia’s Habitat home which is scheduled to begin in September of 2020.
To become a member of Comal County Women Build or learn more about Comal County Habitat for Humanity, please visit www.comalhabitat.org.
April 07, 2020
If you follow Comal County Habitat for Humanity ReStore on social media, you may have heard us say it before – “every day is Earth Day.” But what do we mean by that? In this blog post, we’ll go over some of the ways we stay Earth-friendly every day here at our local ReStore.
1. Our donors and customers help reduce, reuse and recycle everyday items.
We accept a large variety of gently-used items from donors in our community that could otherwise end up in our local landfills. Donors are able to recycle their appliances, furniture, home décor, building materials and so much more through the ReStore. Those items are then sold to the public at a fraction of the retail price. Customers reuse or repurpose their purchased items and give them a second lease on life. This cycle is repeated constantly through the ReStore, offering our community an environmentally-friendly alternative to throwing away useful items.
2. Funds raised from donations and purchases help build energy-efficient Habitat homes.
Funds raised through the ReStore go toward the cost of building homes in partnership with families in our community. Comal County Habitat for Humanity builds energy-efficient homes in a variety of ways, including using spray foam insulation and installing energy-efficient appliances, windows and light fixtures.
3. We accept both working and non-working vehicle donations
Habitat for Humanity’s “Cars for Homes” program offers the opportunity for individuals to donate their car, RV, boat, trailer, motorcycle, farm equipment and more for a possible tax-deduction. The donated vehicle is then sold or dismantled to be recycled. Donated vehicles don’t have to be running in order to be donated, and even better, funds raised from “Cars for Homes” donations help build Habitat homes in our community!
4. We provide an affordable resource for DIY projects
You’ve heard of “reduce, reuse, recycle,” but what about “repurpose”? Repurposing is exactly how it sounds - taking an item and giving it a second life with a usefulness it didn’t have before. People repurpose everyday items in clever ways; from converting old wardrobes and dressers into coffee bars to creating patio furniture out of wooden pallets, the Do-It-Yourself projects are endless! Since we mark everything 50-75% off the retail price and receive a large variety of donated items, there are new repurposing / DIY projects for our creative customers to choose from every day. For some great DIY and repurposing ideas, check out this article on “100 ways to repurpose & reuse broken household items”: https://www.diyncrafts.com/6081/repurpose/100-ways-repurpose-reuse-broken-household-items
5. We do everything we can to recycle items we can’t sell
Occasionally, we’ll get items donated that we can’t sell in the store due to our local store policy. Thanks to a grant we received from Expanding Horizons, we’re able to keep bins in our donation center for some specific items that we then donate to other local businesses and nonprofits in our community!
It’s important to us to provide affordable, consistent resources for donating and repurposing useful items. In 2019 alone, we saved thousands of pounds of furniture, appliances, building materials and household items from the landfill, with those numbers increasing every year as our community continues to grow. As we celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd and every day, we continue to be grateful to our community for helping us provide an environmentally friendly solution. Not only do we treat every day like Earth Day, but we also take pride in providing funds to build Habitat homes in partnership with families in our community.
There are four major ways you can get involved with us this Earth Day and every day! The first is to shop - we couldn’t continue to build Habitat homes and save items from the landfill without our customers. The second is to donate! 80? 90?% of our merchandise is donated items from local individuals, businesses and organizations. Donors receive tax receipts for their items. The third way to get involved is to volunteer. Volunteers are the backbone and heart of everything we do - from processing donations to cleaning items and stocking the shelves, the opportunities are endless. We even have some volunteers that fix donated items that need a little extra love. One of the best parts about volunteering is that you set your own schedule - whether you can give 8 hours a week or 8 hours a month, we have opportunities to suit your needs. The fourth way to get involved is to spread the word. Share our posts on social media (click here for a link to our Facebook page and here for our Instagram), tell your friends and neighbors about us and stay up to date on events and specials we have in the ReStore by subscribing to our ReStore customer newsletter!
November 07, 2019
It was 11 months ago in December of 2019 when United States Army veteran Mario, his wife Norma and their two children learned that they had qualified to partner with Habitat to build their home. Mario served as a medic in the United States Army for six years, during which he was deployed to Afghanistan between 2010 and 2011. While in Afghanistan, he performed clinical duties at Kandahar Air Field and assisted in training Afghanistan National Army and Police.
“It was exciting, you know?” said Mario. “It was just like a Godsend… (I thought) okay, thank you God, we’re gonna get a house.”
Habitat for Humanity partners with qualified low-income families to build their homes. The program is a hand up, not a hand out. Homes are built through donation of monetary funds, land, building materials, contractor services and volunteer labor. During a family’s partnership with Habitat, they complete 350 hours of sweat equity and home buyer education courses that both mentally and financially prepare them for successful home ownership. Upon completion of construction, families pay a long-term, affordable mortgage to Habitat.
For the first time in Comal County Habitat for Humanity’s history, home ownership education was taught through Dave Ramsey’s “Financial Peace University” which features step-by-step methods to money management like saving $1,000 for emergencies, paying off debt, saving 3 to 6 months of total household income and more. As part of Habitat’s Home Program, families are encouraged to bring any children 14 years and older to the home buyer education courses.
“Maddy (our daughter) got a job in the summer and she saved her money,” Norma said. “Half went to savings, half went to her. (She learned that) from the class.”
“I told her (my daughter), ‘look at mom and dad. I don’t want you to be like that,’” said Mario. “We spent $1,300 a month on going out to eat. That was just kind of like an ‘oh crap’ moment for me and Norma. If we’re gonna get a house… we need to stop. That needs to stop.”
During a Financial Peace University session, Mario and Norma realized they had incurred $30,000+ in debt. One of the steps Dave Ramsey teaches during Financial Peace is the “debt snowball” method – the idea is to pay off your smallest amount of debt first and then apply that payment amount in addition to your minimum payment of the next largest debt. As you continue to increase the payment towards each debt, you have the potential to pay off your debt much quicker.
“The class really changed us,” said Norma. “Seeing everything on paper and in writing… going out to eat, spending on all these electronics. Everything was ‘okay, let’s go’ and not really saying ‘you know that extra $300 could’ve gone to paying this bill off completely and we wouldn’t have it (any) more.”
It was through Comal County Habitat’s home buyer education courses that Mario and Norma realized their potential to qualify for a traditional mortgage.
“When we were in the program, we started saving and we knocked everything down like it says there you know, snowball,” Norma said. “Pay one bill off, that money (is) used for the other one and that’s exactly what I did.”
“This class (Financial Peace University) is gold,” Mario said. “Take everything to heart, write it down, record it, whatever you gotta do. Take a picture. This class is gold. That’s the only way we got this house.”
Soon after Mario and Norma’s decision to apply for a traditional mortgage, they withdrew their family from Comal County Habitat for Humanity’s Home Program. Due to their diligence and hard work, Mario and Norma recently moved their family out of Norma’s parent’s home and into their new four bedroom home here in New Braunfels.
“At Comal County Habitat, we want every family to have a safe, decent place to live- whether it’s through our Home Program or otherwise,” said Alan Rubiola, Communications Manager at Comal County Habitat for Humanity. “We are absolutely thrilled that Mario and Norma were able to pursue their dreams of homeownership through a traditional mortgage. This opens up the opportunity for another family in need of affordable housing to qualify for our Home Program and learn the same financial tools that empowered Mario and Norma.”
Comal County Habitat for Humanity is now accepting applications from potential homebuyers in our community. Anyone interested in partnering with Comal County Habitat to build their home can pick up an application at their offices located at 1269 Industrial Drive, New Braunfels, TX 78130 any time between 9 AM and 5 PM Tuesday – Saturday. The deadline to fill out and return a homebuyer application is December 10th.
November 02, 2019
America Recycles Day is coming up on November 15th – although recycling remains an everyday opportunity to make the world a better place, the annual “Keep America Beautiful” trademark day serves as a friendly reminder to reduce, reuse, recycle and shop recycled products. No matter how you choose to celebrate this America Recycles Day, consider local nonprofits when recycling or purchasing things like home good items, furniture, building supplies and more. Read on for five ways to celebrate America Recycles Day with the ReStore.
1. Don’t dump, donate!
- Comal County Habitat for Humanity ReStore accepts donations of new and gently-used home good items, furniture, building materials and more. Funds raised from sales in the ReStore contribute to the overall cost of building Habitat for Humanity homes in Comal County. Since its inception, ReStores across the nation have saved over 13,000,000 pounds of usable construction materials and 200 tons of furniture, appliances and home good items from landfills. Comal County ReStore’s donation center is open 6 days a week and even offers a pick-up service for large or bulky donations. Call us to schedule a donation pick-up at (830) 625-4025 or fill out our donation form online at www.comalhabitat.org/restore/donate.
2. Shop recycled items.
- New and gently-used donated items are sold to the public at a fraction of the retail cost, saving customers up to 75% off the item’s original value. That means you can save BIG on all of your home improvement needs – from furniture to home décor, building supplies and more. Shopping recycled and donated items gives that item a second life, saves you money and has a positive impact on our environment.
3. From donation to DIY
- Repurposing/reusing an item to be functional piece of your home is a great way to reduce the amount of items in our landfills. For fun ReStore DIY inspiration and tips, check out this article from Habitat for Humanity International.
- Volunteers are the backbone and heart of Comal County Habitat for Humanity and the ReStore. Spend a few hours with us processing donated items in our Donation Center or help sell donated items in the ReStore. No skills or experience are necessary to volunteer with us – we’ll provide training and the tools you need to have a great experience. To sign up to volunteer, visit our volunteer page.
5. Spread the word.
- As America Recycles Day approaches, help raise awareness about the ReStore by sharing our posts on social media or talking to your friends, neighbors and co-workers about our mission. Together, we can make a positive difference on the environment and in the lives of families in our community.
The ReStore funds the mission of Comal County Habitat for Humanity by selling new and gently-used home good items directly to the public. Funds raised from the ReStore go toward building Habitat homes in our community, as well as cover many administrational and operational expenses for Comal County Habitat. This provides donors the opportunity for their donation to go directly to the building of safe, decent and affordable homes.
To learn more about America Recycles Day, visit americarecyclesday.org.