Luke Shirek uses a saw with Noel Shirek's guidance.
Gabriel Shirek holds a completed bird house.
Mitch Shirek uses a nailer to secure the roof.
|The boys show off some of the bird houses they built.|
Spring means that the birds have come back to sing happy songs, build nests, and delight bird-lovers everywhere. The members of Kosobud No. 106, of Lankin, ND, decided to help their feathered friends and make it easier to watch them in their communities.
Secretary Jo Ann Ryba commented, "I love watching the birds, especially the orioles and hummingbirds. I know many of the older people in Lakota do too. We originally had the idea from an article published previously in the Fraternal Herald with ideas for Join Hands Day projects."
With this audience in mind, members of No. 106 gathered after their meeting on April 3 in a nearby garage to build bird houses.
Member Noel Shirek is also a carpenter, and provided free lumber that was prepared by him from salvaged barn wood. The lodge had no cost in the materials except some nails due to the donation.
Shirek lent his skills to the project by preparing some patterns, supervising, and explaining how to create a birdhouse. He commented, "We had fun together. The kids did most of the work."
Three youth members, aged eight to twelve, were able to join in the effort hands-on, which provided a nice learning activity. Under adult supervision, they were able to use a saw and other power tools. Each house was custom-detailed to the builder's liking. Youth members enjoyed adding elements like little chimneys or doorway accents from the leftover pieces of wood. The lodge made 13 houses total, and each had their lodge name on it.
They arranged to have the bird houses and feeders delivered to the Lakota rest home and other places where retired people in the community could enjoy them.
Secretary Ryba noted, "Next year, we plan to do the project again." The project will likely be something targeted as a gift for the senior population.
Shirek added, "Two of the kids wanted to build more projects and asked their dad. It's nice to see that they were interested and had a good time."
Other lodges seeking ways to get youth involved in hands-on learning fun might look at their nearby Home Depot. On the first Saturday of each month, Home Depot’s free kids workshops are at 9 a.m. to noon, and offer fun and useful projects.
The workshops are great for 5 to 12-year-olds, and they teach children do-it-yourself skills and tool safety. If you do not have one near, check out their website for ideas you can do at home.
Call 877-935-2467 to speak with a Western Fraternal Life Representative.