The founding of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is, at heart, an immigrant’s story: a family uproots from their home in the Middle East to make a better life in America. A son, a successful entertainer wanting to thank his country for his prosperity, gives the world St. Jude.
That immigrant son, Danny Thomas, dedicated St. Jude in 1962, saying, “If I were to die this minute, I would know why I was born.”
Nearly 40 years later, an immigrant to the United States from Colombia, Jairo Alvarez Botero, built his first St. Jude Dream Home in Baton Rouge, La.
Every year since, Alvarez Construction has built a Dream Home, raising more than $20 million to help ensure that no family ever receives a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food — because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.
Jairo built his own construction company from the ground up in America. He passed away in 2013, and today his kids — Carlos, Sebastian and Ana — carry on his legacy of giving back through the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway® program to honor their father’s hard work and celebrate his successes.
The St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway program can be found in more than 30 locations across the country and raised more than $31 million in 2017 to help support the lifesaving mission of St. Jude.
Alvarez Construction is the second-longest Dream Home builder in the program, and when Ana is asked why her family has continued to be involved, her reply comes quickly.
How could we not? We’ve met so many wonderful people, but it doesn’t really hit home until you have your own kids, nieces and nephews. We just have to; it’s in our blood. After being involved for so many years, it’s just part of who we are, part of what our company is all about.