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76-year-old Habitat for Humanity volunteer reflects on 21 years of helping families in need

Chuck Srgo has helped build 165 houses with Habitat for Humanity since 1998. He says giving back to the community has been 'a blessing to me'.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Habitat for Humanity helps build homes for those in need, but the organization’s work wouldn’t be possible without the dedication of its volunteers.

“Volunteers make Habitat,” said Lisa Hebert, head of Community and Faith Relations for Habitat for Humanity. Among all the volunteers putting in hard labor rain or shine, Chuck Sgro stands out.

“Chuck’s one of our rocks,” Hebert said.

Sgro has helped build 165 houses over the last two decades. The 76-year-old started volunteering with Habitat in 1998. He thought he would just volunteer one time, but that one experience changed his life.

“It’s the families and the appreciation, meeting the homeowners and understanding what their stories are,” he said.

On Sgro's first build, he met a pair of sisters excited to share a room together. Before Habitat started work on their house, they not only had to share a room with their mom and brother, but they even shared a bed.

Credit: Chuck Srgo

“I was happy to be able to do it that day, but I did not intend on going back until I heard that story and I thought, this is something I really enjoy,” Sgro said.

With his “House Leader” shirt and his blue Louisville hat, Srgo and his team work to change the lives of people like Theenda Hughes, who never imagined being a homeowner.

“My grandbaby has somewhere to call home. I have custody of my grandbaby,” Hughes said. “It means the world. Habitat has become my family.”

Stories like hers are the reason Sgro has put so much love and hard work into Habitat for Humanity over the last 20 years.

“I’m tired, I’m worn out, but I feel so much better having done what I do,” Sgro said. “I’ve been blessed with a great life. The ability to be able to give that back in any way I can is a blessing to me.”

For more information on how to get involved with your local Habitat for Humanity, visit Habitat.org.

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