County Fare: New Life Chiropractic raises $10,000 for Habitat for Humanity

Dr. Kurt Schagen of New Life Chiropractic presents a check for $10,405 to Carolyn Valli, CEO of Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, at the Deming Street building site in Pittsfield. Also pictured are New Life staff, members of the Habitat construction crew, and the family of Susie Barto and Derrick O'Keefe, the first of six families moving in to the newly constructed town house.

For the past four years, Dr. Kurt Schagen and New Life Chiropractic in Pittsfield have raised over $10,000 for Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity through the practice's outreach program, "Give Back Movement."Schagen and his staff recently presented a $10,405 check to Carolyn Valli, Central Berkshire Habitat's chief executive officer, at Habitat's Deming Street building site in Pittsfield.

Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit organization that works to help community members build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage.

Schagen always has believed that giving back to the community is an important responsibility of a business owner.

Schagen, originally from New Jersey, has been donating to local charities since he moved to the Berkshires in 1993 to begin his practice.

One of his goals has been to raise awareness of the role chiropractic plays in the health and wellness of the community. Through the practice's "Give Back Movement," Schagen has been able to achieve both goals of giving back to the community through philanthropic donations as well as raising awareness of chiropractic.

Schagen provides free education and screenings to local organizations and businesses. At the same time, he has been donating every initial consultation and exam fee to local charities, such as the Make a Wish Foundation, Moments House and others, before beginning his partnership with Habitat for Humanity in 2016.

"Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity is honored to be selected as the 'Give Back Movement' recipient for the last four years," Valli said. "We are pleased to partner with a health provider like Dr. Schagen who understands the direct link between home and health."

Scouts' (highest) honor

Anna Welch, of New Ashford, has earned the Girl Scouts' highest honor, the Gold Award, bestowed upon only 6 percent of Girl Scouts nationwide.

Girl Scouts of Central & Western Massachusetts honored the 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts in a June 18 ceremony at the Northfield Drive-In. With their accomplishments and speeches projected on the big screen, family, friends and organization staff were able to safely witness and celebrate the capstone of the girls' Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

Welch's project, "The Golden Generations Meets the 'I' Generation," began as one girl teaching her great-great-aunt to navigate an iPad, and it turned into one girl providing residents at an assisted living center with the technology skills needed to communicate with far-away loved ones on their own laptop computers.

Striving to bridge a technology gap and help senior citizens connect, Welch made regular visits to teach and created a pamphlet with easy step-by-step instructions that residents could refer to when she wasn't there to help.

Welch, a 2020 graduate of Mount Greylock Regional School in Williamstown, will be attending St. John's University in Queens, N.Y., this fall. She is enrolled in the university's Tobin College of Business and plans to major in marketing.

County Fare, a weekly column featuring "tales from throughout the Berkshires," is compiled by Eagle staffers.