“Wherever there is injustice, you will find us. Wherever there is suffering, we'll be there. Wherever liberty is threatened, you will find…The Three Amigos!”
So maybe Habitat for Humanity’s Three Amigos aren’t fighting bandits in the Mexican desert, but to our Superintendents, partner families and volunteers they’ve helped over the years, they’re every bit as heroic as the fictional characters in the popular comedy.
Mark Gabler, Koji Kasuyama and Richard Smith are Habitat “regulars,” volunteers who give hundreds of hours each year and offer specialized assistance to our Construction Superintendents. Each Amigo, as they are affectionately referred to at Habitat, volunteers about two to three times a week and offers invaluable help to the Superintendents who teach and supervise up to 20 volunteers and partner family members, most of whom have little to no construction experience.
The Amigos also started off as most of our construction volunteers do – inexperienced but eager to dig into a hands-on project. Mark, a retired high school biology teacher, started volunteering at Habitat seven years ago and knew little about construction but loved the mission of the organization. Koji, who is now referred to as the “Prince of Porcelain” for his burgeoning plumbing knowledge, retired as an aeronautical engineer and confesses to knowing little beyond the basics of doing stuff around the house, but has been volunteering regularly since 2006. Richard, former Director of San Diego’s Air Pollution Control District, said he “got by at home” with his construction knowledge but learned most of what he knows onsite by volunteering with the organization. “I also like the pay and benefits,” he joked.
“The Amigos go above and beyond what’s expected of volunteers and jump in wherever is needed. They’ve helped us out of so many binds where we were short-staffed or had a really large group. I can’t overstate how much of a help they are,” says Chief Construction Officer Ken Kosman.
All Amigos agree that creating a home for someone is a real blessing and they enjoy being a part of the process from start to finish.
Thank you, Amigos! We couldn’t do it without you!
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