Just like sleeping and eating, giving or sharing, helping or volunteering are important to one’s mental, physical, and psychological well-being. We are social creatures, and there is nothing more rewarding than to help another, or simply to make the world a better place. We all need purpose in our lives, and what greater purpose is there than to improve the world wherein we live. Habitat for Humanity uses volunteers working together to build affordable homes for people in need. Pounding those nails into 2X4’s to build walls is very therapeutic – physically and mentally – and to see the results culminate into a home for a family in need is a psychological high. Doing good for others has its rewards that are impacting in a very positive way for your personal health!  

Ever since I retired from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in 2008, I’ve been working with Santa Fe Habitat for Humanity’s Staff, Board, and Volunteers, and cooking at the St. Elizabeth Shelter in Santa Fe. Many of the AmeriCorps volunteers at Habitat have worked with me, and have enjoyed helping me cook at the Shelter. It’s been fun; we’ve had a great time, and all the experiences have indeed been rewarding.   

Make the world a better place wherever you are – your life will have purpose and good physical, psychological, and mental health besides!

Written by Dan Rusthoi

Dan is a retired scientist who has actively participated with Santa Fe Habitat Habitat for over a decade, including serving as a Partner Family Advocate, Office Volunteer, and Board Member. He is a former Iran Peace Corps Volunteer, a current chef at the St. Elizabeth Shelter, plays piano at his church and for special events, and enjoys all active outdoor activities.