Sotheby’s International Realty is Rebuilding Morelos, Mexico

Agents of Change
Oct 29, 2018 · 3 min read

In 2017, on the 33rd anniversary of the 1985 Mexico City Earthquake, a 7.1 magnitude earthquake rocked central Mexico causing over 240 deaths and injuring an estimated 1,900 people. With over 184,000 households damaged families were left without a safe place to go, and were forced to set up temporary camps made of overlapping tarps and repurposed vinyl.

Flattened Apartment Block Post Earthquake

After healthcare, shelter is the most urgent need for those affected by natural disasters — this is when New Story stepped in, recognizing the dire need to help not only rebuild homes, but create a new community infrastructure that would be sustainable and last for generations to come. They committed to building between 177–347 homes throughout the Mexican state of Morelos (Zacatepec — 33 homes, Emiliano Zapata — 62 homes, Totolapan — 29 homes, Tlayacapan — 53 homes, Cuernavaca — 170 homes).

Temporary Shelter in Mexico City

This situation has inspired Sotheby’s International Realty to also get involved. With the belief that everyone deserves a home, and their mission to transform lives, they are connecting the top of the real estate pyramid to the very bottom through their Agents of Change program. Globally Sotheby’s Realtors are joining the movement, and funding the transformation of Morelos by donating a portion of their real estate commissions on home sales to build homes for families living in these unimaginable and dangerous conditions.

New Story works with local builders, Echale A Tu Casa, and other local suppliers to allow everyone in the community to input on how the community should be built. “Because we don’t have all the answers, we are committed to a participatory design strategy and rely on this input to build homes that include the amenities needed to create a holistic community.” All homes built in Morelos will include electricity, running water, kitchen, two bedrooms and a bathroom. For $7000 USD a brand new home can be built, transforming the lives of the people of Morelos, Mexico for years to come.

Community & Home Design Plans

These homes are unique because they are constructed using Ecoblocks. A new, environmentally friendly brick made in the community, by the community. By mixing cement (10%) with abundant locally found materials (90%), these homes are extremely eco-friendly, reducing the waste and transport emissions associated with the construction of homes. When the community begins construction a brick press is delivered, and the community is trained on how to press bricks. All bricks they create are used to build their community.

“We believe in a hand up, not a hand out that’s why we encourage families to contribute wherever possible, helping to instill a pride of ownership felt throughout the community”, says Brett Hagler, Co-Founder New Story Charity.

If you are interested in helping fund a home, and transforming the life of a family living in survival mode you can find out more at by clicking here.

When you donate to the Agents of Change you will be sent construction updates, pictures, videos and family stories. When construction is complete you will receive a video of the family receiving the keys to the home you funded.

Family in Front of their New Home
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