By: Sharon Aron Baron
Every May, one South Florida company shuts their doors for business to perform a company-wide community service project.
Keller Williams Realty introduced “Red Day” back in 2009. Red, which stands for Renew, Energize and Donate, is Keller Williams Realty’s annual day of service. Each year on the second Thursday of May, their associates spend the day away from their businesses serving worthy organizations and causes in their communities. Their Plantation location with over 120 agents were looking for ideas for a service project this year’s when Coral Springs resident and Realtor Joy Carter received a tip that the Boys and Girls Club in North Lauderdale wanted a lego room. “I took it back to the committee of about eight people to decide,” she said.
Carter said that Patty Accorto, chair of Culture Committee at Keller Williams, headed up the project, and soon realized that the Boys and Girls Club needed much more than a lego room. The pool area was in disrepair, the bathrooms needed to be pressure cleaned, and weeds were growing everywhere.
“There were things that were destroyed after hurricane Wilma and were never fixed,” said Carter. “Around the pool were weeds, and there was no protection from the sun either.”
The Keller Williams team raised $5,000 of the $7,000 estimated that it would need for the projects. To make up the difference, they went to suppliers, vendors and customers. Carter was amazed at how many people stepped up and helped. “Every single realtor at our office was connected to someone that wanted to help.”
The project was finished in one day, with two days of advance prep work.
Volunteers turned a plain card room into a colorful, playful room by gluing blue lego boards to the wall and by painting inspirational pictures.
“One of my customers donated rubberized gym mats. We also went on Ebay, and Facebook and got lego pieces, then cleaned the pieces for the room.”
The lifeguard stand also got a makeover too and was freshly stained. Carter, who headed up the landscape team planted new plants around the building. She estimates there were over 75 volunteers working at one time on the project.
Last year, the Keller Williams office rebuilt a greenhouse for a school for special needs children.
Said Carter, “Every year I look forward to making life better for someone else.”