Meet Core Volunteer Stephen Lauria
Stephen Lauria started volunteering with Habitat about two years ago and decided to join the blue hard hat club as a Regular/Core Volunteer* nine months ago. He initially started building with Habitat because his work schedule allowed him every other Friday off and “it seemed like a good thing to do, get outside, do something good.”
As a Core Volunteer, Stephen gets to see the transformation of each Habitat home. “It’s cool to see the progress that we’re making, and to come out regularly so you can be a part of what’s going on here. One day you’ll be here and it’s just a slab, and the next time you come out you’re working on walls.”
Stephen also notices the impact of building houses with Habitat, how he’s helping to construct homes for families to build their futures. He specifically remembers one day volunteering at Sheridan Square during a break, he saw kids from the first few families who had moved in riding their bikes and getting to know each other. He reflected on what the houses he helped build meant to those kids.
“Just knowing that these kids probably came from a situation that was not a very good one, they now have a good house to live in, a chance to make friends, a chance to ride their bikes outside. It was really heartwarming.”
Why should occasional volunteers consider becoming Regular/Core Volunteers? According to Stephen:
- You have an opportunity to gain particular skills in construction.
- A lot of regulars are retired, but for younger people like me it’s also a great opportunity to have a leadership experience. You have a chance as a Regular to lead small crews on the tasks for the day.
- You also get to meet a ton of new people. I started right after I moved out here to Denver, so it was a great way to come out and meet people.
- It’s also fulfilling to see houses go up and families move in. We have about 20 individual units up right now, and as a Regular you get to be a part of all of them.”