Ringing the bell for the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle campaign in early December has become a tradition for several local Realtor® associations across the state.
Members of 10 local associations participated in a Ring Day, specifically designated for Realtors®, to help their local Salvation Army offices raise money for their communities. Ring Day donations enable the Salvation Army to provide food, toys and clothing to more than 6 million people during the Christmas season and help more than 34 million Americans recovering from all types of personal disasters.
The Central Susquehanna Valley Board of Realtors® has been participating in Ring Day for nearly a decade and CSVBR President Angela Young has coordinated the volunteer activity for the last eight years.
“We had 10 different real estate offices ringing at eight locations across five counties,” Young said. “We’re really grateful for the participation we have during this event. Each office takes a location and coordinates a schedule for their agents. The nice part about this is the monies Realtors® raise stay in the communities where they live and work. We had so many people come out, support us and donate. People were very generous this year.”
“I’m grateful that I don’t have to worry about having heat, gas for my car or food to feed my family,” she added. “Many people aren’t as fortunate. This is a day that we can all come together and help those who are the most needy in our communities. It’s our way of giving back at a time of the year when people really need it.”
Young said someone reached out while she was ringing the bell to explain that he didn’t have money to pay his utilities and for food this year. She was able to contact the Salvation Army in her town and they were able to assist him.
Jessica South, Community Service Committee chair for the Beaver County Association of Realtors®, has volunteered to ring with the same agent every year. The association schedules three sites in their community during Ring Day.
“For me personally, this is an easy way to help others during the holiday season,” South said. “Growing up, my family was involved with the Salvation Army, so I’ve always been involved personally. When this opportunity came up through the association, I thought it was great opportunity to give back professionally as well.”
She said BCAR has a core group of members who want to give back to the community and volunteer every year. “We all try to make this a fun event; many people dress up as elves or in festive clothing. It’s really a feel-good event.”
Local associations participating include:
- Beaver County Association of Realtors®
- Central Susquehanna Valley Board of Realtors®
- Clearfield-Jefferson Association of Realtors®
- Fayette Board of Realtors®
- Lebanon County Association of Realtors®
- Luzerne County Association of Realtors®
- Reading-Berks Association of Realtors®
- Realtors® Association of Metropolitan Pittsburgh
- Warren County Board of Realtors®
- Westmoreland West Association of Realtors®