Krafted Homes Blog

Krafted Homes Team Angola Trip 2017

Paul, his dad, and two other men have been in Africa

October 14, 2017

Dear Friends,

Thank you so much for your prayers and support. We now are back in the U.S. after a safe, very rewarding, and fruitful whirlwind trip to Angola a couple of weeks ago with the Krafted Homes team.

Many of you prayed:

For acquisition of our visas.

  • Our visit to the Angolan Consulate in Houston, Texas resulted in the return of our passports with visas to each one of us via FedEx the day before our scheduled departure for Angola!

For a good and favorable customs inspection of the container’s contents.

  • Customs had allowed the container to clear port and for it to be trucked to Lubango. Unfortunately, that trucker was not willing to take the container all the way to Cavango and the one suitable crane was not available (it was broken) to remove the container from his truck. So…; the contents were removed from the container, the container was dragged off the truck, and much of the contents returned into the container. All of which, of course, allowed suitable customs inspection and documentation to the inspector’s satisfaction and ultimate favorable clearance. All of this occurred before our arrival, so we are thankful for fellow missionaries and local help making all of this happen as necessary!

For the logistics of getting the container to Cavango.

  • After we arrived in Lubango, a trucker was found and hired to haul the container to Cavango.
  • We emptied the container again, arranged a small crane, and hoisted the container onto the back of his truck. With local help, we again reloaded the container. As you can imagine, packing 37,000 pounds of
    contents by hand into a 20′ container up on the back of a truck is quite the chore! But, we were successful and very grateful to finally get it accomplished.
  • In addition to working through the trucker and container loading processes; we also worked on getting the Ford L8000 truck fixed, ready for travel, and loaded for the trip.
  • Very early Friday morning, Scott and I (in the L8000) rendezvoused with the trucker and container on the outskirts of Lubango to begin our trek to the mission station of Cavango. The trucker, after more than 16 hours on the road, stopped for the night at one of the villages along the way; but Scott and I continued. And after almost 24 hours of continuous driving, Scott and I safely arrived in Cavango. Saturday morning, Dr. Tim Kubacki arranged a motorcyclist to meet up with the trucker and guide him the rest of the way in. Saturday afternoon, the truck and container finally arrived too!
  • Cavango is only about a 370 mile trip from Lubango and, even though almost 280 of those miles are paved roads, the last 90 miles to Cavango make for an arduous challenge. Those last 90 miles are extremely brutal in large, trucks; especially large trucks with heavy loads. Since we were transporting the runway-project skid loader on the L8000, Scott was able to get our truck unstuck on a detour trail around a failed bridge and then repair that trail sufficiently to allow both of our trucks to make it. Overall, the container truck was able to average only about 5 miles per hour for that 90 mile stretch of “road”.

For traveling mercies.

  • Throughout all our travels, God provided safety and blessing. We enjoyed and appreciated good flights, good weather conditions, and no missed connections.
  • Though we had strenuous and continuous itineraries of back-to-back flight durations (2 hours, 15 hours, 9 hours, 2 hours) with multiple airport lay-over durations (5 hours, 9 hours, 7 hours), even Dad did well through it all.
  • We are grateful that MAF (Missionary Aviation Fellowship) was able to fly Dad and Bob to and from an airstrip near Cavango (2 hour flight) so that they only had to experience about 20 miles of the Lubango-to-Cavango “roads” for an hour or so each way.
  • Overall, the vehicles and our loads did very well in spite of the horrendous “road” conditions. We experienced broken hydraulic hoses, clogged filters, and a burst coolant hose; but all were fairly minor in nature and we were able to resolve issues with items on hand and without too much delay. Scott and I appreciated that our return trip to Lubango in the L8000 was ‘only’ about 14 hours in duration.

For fruitful meetings, activities, and endeavors.

  • We were blessed with excellent meetings and interactions in Lubango and at Cavango with church and denominational leadership, seminary leadership, a number of missionaries, as well as quite a number of African colleagues and friends.
  • We experienced warm hospitality, great fellowship, and renewed relationship each step of the way. We were well taken care of, fed well, and provided comfortable accommodations.
  • We were successful in helping get the container and contents to Cavango.
  • We now have provided 9 functioning Zambulances to transport patients throughout the huge area serviced by Cavango’s medical facilities. They will be disbursed in surrounding key villages to be readily available in time of need. These will be a huge blessing and we can only imagine how many lives will benefit. Learn more about Zambulances at: http://www.zambikeszambia.com/products/products-for-zambia/zambulance/.
  • There are now building structure and roofing components at Cavango to expand and grow the medical work. As currently envisioned, this 40′ x 95′ building will be the first of five similarly sized new buildings for the Cavango Hospital facility.
  • We were able to utilize the runway-project bulldozer and skid loader to excavate for the new hospital building foundation. Dr. Tim will arrange and direct community and local help to place the foundation and concrete slab.
  • We were able to utilize the skid loader and jack-hammer attachment to remove a portion of an old foundation and improve drainage to divert water runoff from flooding one of the existing patient ward buildings during the rainy season.

For strength and good health.

  • All of us experienced good health, no physical issues, and a great spirit throughout the trip.

For the safety and well-being of our loved ones.

  • Not only did God bless us individually, we were additionally blessed with our loved ones’ safety and well-being in spite of various health challenges and issues. God is indeed great and good!

That we would be an encouragement and blessing.

I hope and I trust that we were indeed an encouragement and blessing to the mission work, the church work, and ultimately God’s work in Angola through and during this trip. I know that I was blessed and encouraged:

  • By my fellow team members – Scott Van Haitsma, Bob Vasquez, and Dad.
  • By each of the missionaries we were privileged to encounter in Angola.
  • By the Angolan church members and leadership.
  • By Dr. Tim and Betsy Kubacki (I strongly encourage you to read more about them at: http://kubacki6.wordpress.com.  You may especially be challenged by Tim’s blog).

By each of you:

  • That prayed for us.
  • That supported us.
  • That kept the ‘home fires burning’ in our absence.
  • That made it possible for us to go and be your hands and feet and heart in Angola.
           

As we look forward and plan ahead, please keep these Angola projects in your thoughts and prayers. We are currently planning as follows:

  • 2018 – support the restarting and completion of the runway construction project at Cavango.
  • 1st to 2nd Quarter of 2018 – ship another container. This will likely contain at least one other building package, tools, generator, repair parts, tires, and miscellaneous building materials and equipment.
  • 2nd to 3rd Quarter of 2018 – conduct another team construction trip or two.
  • Erect the first new hospital building structure and roof
  • Visit the Kuvango church to measure and verify the foundation they are constructing
  • 2019 – ship another container with the Kuvango church building structure and roof package
  • 2019 – conduct another team construction trip to erect the Kuvango church building

Additionally, we would really like to fit in a new church building with a new school annex building at Cavango just as soon as possible. The mission and Angola church leadership have requested our assistance with many of their needs and desires. We’d like to help them wherever and however we can. Sometimes the opportunities and the challenges seem overwhelming, but God is great and we trust in Him to guide and direct and provide.

If you are led to financially support any of these projects or efforts, tax-deductible contributions can be gifted:
               

Through the mail to:
                           Advancing the Gospel in Angola
                           25 Maple Street
                           Addison, NY  14801

Online:
                           www.hopeforangola.org

Please reference the “Colorado Connection” to ensure appropriate designation.

Let me know if you’d like to consider participation in one of our team construction trips. We need your help! I’d love to talk with you. Thank you so much for your prayers and support. We greatly appreciate you, your help, and your participation. We can’t do it without each one of you.

Paul Hockersmith

Family Owned Krafted Homes Celebrates 30 Years in Colorado Springs

L-R Uriah (in arms) with Tim and Meredith Hockersmith, Donny Andrade, Paul Hockersmith, Jim Erickson, Rose Hockersmith, Andy Mead, Joel Derosier, Ryan Prentiss, and Dave Shaffer Not Pictured: Dave Hockersmith, Duane Hockersmith, Leslie Prentiss and Daniel Ramos

It’s all in the family at Paul and Rose Hockersmith’s construction company, Krafted Homes, Inc.. What began with small construction projects has grown into a formidable family corporation. Locally touted as a ‘premier custom home builder’, they also provide quality contract work throughout the State of Colorado.

While reflecting on those early days in the business, General Contractor and Owner, Paul, recalls, “Rose’s maiden name is Kraft, so we thought the play on the word ‘Krafted’ paid homage to her roots. I like that it reminds me every day how we are blessed to work toward the fulfillment of the dream we shared – to create a business which would meet our family’s needs and be a blessing in our community.”

From basic home remodels to large scale commercial projects, they’ve done it all – together.

Paul and Rose Hockersmith

Paul spent his childhood in Angola and Zambia, Africa, as a missionary kid, and Rose is the daughter of a career US Naval officer. The couple met and married in California and moved to Colorado in 1987. Originally, just the two of them were on the payroll. Now there are fourteen employees – in addition to a host of reliable sub-contractors. Six of those employees are immediate family members.

“Our families of origin were dedicated to great causes,” says Rose. “But sometimes those types of endeavors don’t leave a lot left for family life. Paul and I decided early on in our marriage that we wanted to ‘do life together’. In our case, we felt that meant giving our best efforts to raising our family and supporting our clients throughout the construction process. We’ve made so many great friends along the way that, sometimes, it doesn’t even seem like work!”

Even while Rose was actively rearing and homeschooling their two children, she was supporting the business through bookkeeping and other administrative support.

Meredith (Administrative Assistant) and Tim (Project Manager) Hockersmith

Project Manager, Tim Hockersmith, officially joined the family business at age twelve as a ‘go-for’ and ‘sweeper-upper’. Through the years he began taking more ownership in every aspect of the business and is now a Project Manager capable of taking care of every aspect of the business if Paul is out of town.

Tim’s wife, Meredith Hockersmith (Administrative Assistant), is also a personal trainer and competitive body builder who works 16-20 hours per week in the office.

“I’m absolutely honored to have a role in the family business. I’m learning and growing as a family member, employee, and even as a mother,” she says. “I love being able to bring Uriah [3-year old son] into the office to see all his family working hard. Plus, he’s a celebrity every time he visits the office!”

Ryan (Foreman) and Leslie (Marketing Director) Prentiss

Leslie (Marketing Director), whose husband, Ryan Prentiss (foreman), also works for the company, agrees.

“From the time I was very young, it felt to me like I was part of the business. Starting with seeing my dad at the jobsite, to stamping envelopes, it’s alwasy been a big part of who I am. Though the years I’ve been in and out of the office at KHI performing different tasks, even while working towards a degree in Psychology and later a Masters in Counseling.” she explains. “We really do take a lot of pride in being part of the family business. Although I tend to think of myself as primarily a stay at home mom of two young kiddos, I enjoy putting my degrees to work in supporting adoption/foster placements too.”

One of the KHI current projects is replacing windows at the Colorado Springs School for the Deaf and Blind.

“While working at the School for the Deaf and Blind, I am amazed at the craftsmanship that went into construction, especially the exterior stone,” the overseeing foreman, Ryan Prentiss shares. “During installation of new windows, we can see the hard work and attention to detail that went into creating Jones Hall, which was built in 1912. These details inspire us all to continue that craftsman tradition in the part we are taking in the renovation.”

“It almost seems like the whole dream came full circle with the completion of our subcontracting project for Till [an upscale restaurant northeast of Powers and Union],” beams Paul. “Our boys took full charge and executed to perfection the creative elements we’ve become so well known for. It was very satisfying to see that they are ready to take over the reins-even if I’m not quite ready to relinquish them.”

KHI subcontracted project Till Restaurant

Paul and Rose are dedicated to giving back, through maintaining contact with and supporting the Hope for Angola mission in Angola. Paul, his father, and two other men returned from a trip to Africa the first week of October, which laid the ground work for the completion of a medical facility next summer.

“In Africa, there is always a next home, hospital, or school waiting to be built,” reflects Paul. “All in all, it’s the same mission whichever continent we are on, making the world a better place-one project at a time.”

“No matter where the project is, our goal is the same on each assignment,” shares Rose, “Providing top quality craftsmanship while building long term relationships to strengthen our community.”

Broadmoor area custom home by KHI

 

KHI business meeting in progress

Visit Krafted Homes online:

http://www.kraftedhomes.com

https://www.facebook.com/Krafted-Homes-Inc-245656648791055/

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