Jerry and Ginny Kazmierczak can trace their volunteering efforts all the way through their 39-year marriage when Ginny volunteered at the Cancer Hospital in Buffalo before their kids were born, through Parent Teacher Associations and Boy Scouts, and into their retirement.
“I guess you could say that as long as we’ve been married, we’ve always done something, either through community organizations or something through our church,” said Jerry, who volunteers as the treasurer for Fort Bend Habitat for Humanity.
In addition to Habitat, where Ginny is a worksite volunteer, the Kazmierczaks are also involved with St. Laurence Church, where they help prepare engaged couples for marriage, volunteer with the music ministry, and contribute to any other “opportunities that pop up.”
“Faith is really what it’s all based on,” said Jerry. “We believe that God put us here to do more than just go out and have a good time. There’s a lot more to life than that. We know that Jesus told us many different times in the Bible, and in many different ways, that you need to help the little guy, you need to help your fellow man. And we believe that sincerely.”
Ginny is also on the Board of Directors at Wellsprings Village, a program that houses and educations homeless and abused women. “At any given time there are probably 40 to 48 women living in the village. They basically get to turn their life around and go out and live successfully.”
While Jerry acknowledged that there is “so much need” when it comes to non-profit organizations, he said they were drawn to Habitat and Wellsprings Village because they aren’t “giveaway programs.”
“In both cases, you’re helping people help themselves,” he said. “In Wellsprings Village, you provide the women with the education and the training to pull themselves up, and under Habitat you they work alongside families to build them homes.”
“You’re taking someone in a position where they make almost enough money to make it but not quite enough, and you give them just a little of help to get them up above that threshold so they can take care of their family on their own,” Jerry said.
Although they both agree that their schedules can get hectic – Jerry volunteers between 20 and 30 hours a week, and Ginny volunteers about 12 hours a week for Wellsprings Village — Ginny said they were “blessed” to have a “good, solid marriage” and noted that it helps that they “enjoy working together.”
“It’s truly faith based, it’s what God put us on this earth to do, and it’s part of our marriage,” said Jerry.