The first-annual Texas Exes Care About the Project service initiative has come and gone. But once the volunteering bug bites, it can easily develop into a chronic condition.
The Texas Exes Alaska Chapter alumni enjoyed their first volunteer event so much that they’ve decided to hold service events four times a year. Last Saturday, about a dozen Anchorage-area Longhorn friends and supporters turned out for the chapter’s second quarterly day of service.
Habitat for Humanity was the lucky benefactor of the group’s time and energy. The international nonprofit builds low-cost homes for families who need them. Chapter members installed doors and windows, prepared a lawn, and applied sealant and caulking in three Habitat homes.
The best thing about the project, says chapter social chair Cathy Foerster, BS ’77, Life Member, was working alongside the families who will live in the homes. In addition to hammering nails and weather-proofing doors, the Longhorns formed relationships with the future homeowners.
“One of the future homeowners didn’t speak very good English,” Foerster says. “Every time she wanted me to pull something, she’d yell, ‘Push!’ At first I was confused, but then I figured out she meant ‘pull.’ During the lunch break I explained the difference … she laughed heartily, thanked me, and used her new word liberally all afternoon.”
The chapter members were also joined by a group of military personnel from New Jersey, who were training in Alaska. Foerster says they all shared stories about Alaska, New Jersey, and (of course) Texas.
Now the Alaska Chapter is hard at work planning its next service event—an August celebration for the Texas 4000 riders when they finish their journey from Austin to Anchorage.
Photo courtesy Cathy Foerster