Habitat honors volunteers


News Journal



Jim Krusling, president, left, presents Jay Barkey with his Gold Hammer Award.

Jim Krusling, president, left, presents Jay Barkey with his Gold Hammer Award.


Courtesy photos

Fadi Al Ghawi, right, presents Don Chafin with his Volunteer of the Year Award.


Courtesy photos

Habitat for Humanity Clinton County celebrated another successful building season with a thanksgiving dinner honoring participating volunteers and organizations in early November. The group built two homes this year for deserving families — Donovan Butler and Stephanie Oberlin and Jaime and Brandon Wipperman. Both homes are located in Wilmington.

Recognized for their commitment to Habitat were Alkermes, Business of the Year; Jay Barkey, Golden Hammer award; and Don Chafin, Volunteer of the Year.

Alkermes employees served as framers for Jaime and Brandon Wipperman’s house and then spent another day completing the drywall. Their corporate commitment equaled thousands of dollars and Habitat could not have finished the Wipperman’s home by November without their assistance.

“We needed a big group of volunteers and they were so generous to us,” said Bob Schaad, treasurer for the group. “I can’t tell you what it means when a company’s employees help build a home. Additionally, they have already committed to next season.”

He added that other Clinton County companies can do similar types of work, in the evenings or weekends, as well.

The Golden Hammer award is special to those volunteers with building skills. It acknowledges these accomplishments, combined with a sense of humor. The Golden Hammer award was given to Jay Barkey, who has worked tirelessly for the group — and has done so with grace and a great smile.

Barkey was a Wilmington High School teacher, but in his retirement has devoted many hours to the Habitat group in Clinton County.

Volunteer of the Year is Don Chafin. Don is a founding member of the group that started as a positive response to a Klu Klux Klan rally in the 1980s. It was Don — who had experience leading college students to Habitat builds in the south — that supported the county organization’s beginnings.

He has continued that spirit with fundraising efforts for the county organization through his Smokey Pig barbecue sandwiches at the Corn Festival.

Lastly, Schaad thanked and recognized Bob Hufford and his son, Greg, who led the building of a second home in Wilmington for the group.

“Bob is a great guy and has a heart of gold,” said Schaad. “He brought a joy to the challenges of a Habitat build, working with us and our volunteers. He ensured that we built a solid Habitat home.”

Those interested in volunteering or giving to Habitat should contact the Habitat office at 937-655-9484.

Jim Krusling, president, left, presents Jay Barkey with his Gold Hammer Award.
http://aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2016/11/web1_Jay-Barkey.jpgJim Krusling, president, left, presents Jay Barkey with his Gold Hammer Award. Courtesy photos

Fadi Al Ghawi, right, presents Don Chafin with his Volunteer of the Year Award.
http://aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2016/11/web1_Don-Chafin.jpgFadi Al Ghawi, right, presents Don Chafin with his Volunteer of the Year Award. Courtesy photos

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