December 2, 2018

Volunteerism, community support a daily part of a Realtor’s® life


A story that popped up just after Thanksgiving heralded a study that said Americans were very generous during the holiday season, but not so much during the rest of the year.

Aaron Taylor
2018 NETAR President

The might be true of some people in some places. But it’s sure not the case with the Realtor® family.  Like many trade and professional organizations, the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) and local Realtor® Associations across the nation devote a lot of time, effort and resources to helping those in the Realtor® family and their communities a daily basis.

The Realtors® Relief Foundation is a prime example of that commitment when disasters strike. The foundation distributes all funds collected to disaster relief causes. It was at the forefront of aid distribution during and after major floods and hurricane relief this year as well as the recent horrific wildfires in California. It will be there tomorrow and the day after when the need arises.

Locally, the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors® (NETAR) has risen to the challenge when local needs present themselves whether the need is a routine condition of our economy or a disaster. Fortunately, we don’t see a lot of the latter.

One example of the on-going relationship is NETAR’s support for the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Tennessee. Second Harvest has led the effort to end hunger in the Carter, Greene, Hancock, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan and Washington counties area since 1986.

NETAR and NAR also have a special relationship with the Boys and Girls Clubs to help ensure that young people continue to have a “home away from home” during critical after-school hours and during the summer. That relationship comes with both cash donations and the human equity of volunteers.

And, for the past two years, NETAR has joined forces with the Civitan Club and raised money via a golf tournament to help support a variety of child-focused efforts in the Northeast Tennessee area.

Although much of the Realtor® volunteer spirit – like so many ongoing volunteer programs – goes unseen it’s highly visible during the run-up to Christmas. Just check out the number of real estate professionals who don their red Santa hats and enlist in the Salvation Army’s Kettle Campaign.

Realtors® also invest by serving in local elected and appointed government, civic and charitable organizations. They volunteer at soup kitchens, half-way houses and at their churches. The lists goes on and on because Realtors® have a history of deep-rooted desire and commitment to create safe and vibrant communities.

That commitment is as much of an integral thread to the fabric of the community as the real estate industry is to the local economy. It’s bigger and stronger in both examples than many realize.

If you look at only the what happens during the holiday season, there’s a spike in generosity that falls off after the season. But that’s not a negative because it’s typically the time of the year with individuals and organization dig a little deeper. And it in no way detracts from what happens on a day-in-and-day-out basis when those critical donations and volunteer efforts are essential.

Realtors® know that their community efforts as individuals and as professionals are an important part of what helps make their communities a better place, and they stand and deliver.

So, here’s a hats off to the more than 1,200 NETAR members for their contributions and volunteer efforts during those time when those efforts are recognized and most importantly for the countless other times when they are beneath the public radar.