Helping Hand

April 1, 2005

Many a person looks forward to retirement when there is time to travel, relax, and enjoy life to its fullest.

Many a person looks forward to retirement when there is time to travel, relax, and enjoy life to its fullest.

Why the labor of love? Dr. Fellman always admired his wife's willingness volunteer.

Dr. Fellman always looked forward to retirement, but 6 months after he saw his last patient, he was ready for something different.

Dr. Fellman soon realized that the organization fit his interests perfectly.

"I showed up on a job site and asked what I could do," he said. "I started by simply moving some two-by-fours. immediately liked the people I was working with, and the whole idea went with my appetite. I offered to work 1 day week and have since increased my time 2 days."

Dr. Fellman believes Habitat for Humanity is a noble cause.

"The idea of housing people who normally couldn't own their own home thrilled me," he said."Most people think that the homes are donated. In reality, they are sold drastically below market value. Habitat for Humanity carries a note, interest-free, with no money down, and the recipients of the home are required to perform at least 500 hours of sweat equity. On the whole, people have taken great pride in their homes and have taken good care of them."

"The charity of local people and organizations has been quite amazing," he said. "I see church organizations donate large amounts of money and time to the cause. In addition, companies such as Lowe's have donated money and materials. Whirlpool has supplied many of the major appliances for the homes."

In addition, the experience has given Dr. Fellman an opportunity to learn new skills.

"The sky's the limit when it comes to learning how to do things," he said.