CertaPro: Company Painter Provides Food and Necessities to Those in Need in El Salvador

We love sharing stories of how our team members find their own Social Purpose.  Efrain Montoya,  a painter with CertaPro in Thousand Oaks, CA, wanted to help those in need in El Salvador. Efrain, whose brother lives there, has been collecting monetary donations here in the United States and and sending the money to his brother in El Salvador. His brother uses the money to buy groceries and other essentials for those in need. Many of the people they help are extremely impoverished, living in shacks in rural areas with no easy access or means to obtain food or other supplies.

Kudos to Efrain and his brother for identifying a way they can help people and putting together a plan to make a difference in their lives.

 Many of the supply deliveries have been recorded, and can be viewed below.

 

Declutter Your Home and Help Those in Need

Take a good look around your home. Chances are, you’ll find things you’re not using that are just taking up space. We all accumulate extra stuff over the years that we don’t need. And often these very items could be put to good use by someone who does need them.

Now is a great time to reduce clutter in your home, simplify your life, save money and give back to those in need.

What’s the best way to start your decluttering project?

Start small, beginning with one area or room at a time. It can be as simple as your junk drawer or your guest bathroom vanity.

We suggest for each room or area you plan to declutter, you begin with five  boxes (or bags). Label them as follows: Keep, Donate, Trash, Recycle, Re-locate.

An important part of your decluttering process will be collecting and relocating items you are keeping so they are kept together and in a logical place, i.e. setting up a central location for all batteries or lightbulbs. This is where your life will be simplified, and time and money will be saved. Knowing what you have on hand — and where to find it! —  will eliminate unnecessary purchases in the future.

As you go through items in your home, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is this a duplicate item? If the answer is yes, then ask if you really need duplicates of it or if you can make do with one (or two)

  • Is this something I use on a frequent basis? If yes, consider whether its current storage location is convenient when you need it

  • Is this something I’ve never used or worn? If yes, you probably won’t miss it so this would be a good candidate to donate

  • Have I worn this in the last year? If no, let it go!

  • Do I like this item or am I keeping it for sentimental reasons? If you are holding onto old wedding gifts you will never use because you feel bad letting them go, remember the person who gave them to you will never know you re-homed them

Decluttering provides many benefits, among them giving you more time in your day because when you’ve effectively decluttered your home, finding the items you are looking for becomes easier. Also, who wants to take the time to clean around knickknacks and other dust collectors? Knowing what you have on hand makes you less inclined to buy more of what you already own, helping you save money. You may also consider selling your more valuable items  such as artwork or furniture pieces through a second hand site.

What to do with items you wish to donate (or sell)

There are many non-profit organizations accepting donations for those in need. Some are even doing pickups from donors’ homes. A simple Google search should help you locate non-profits in your area.  

Another option is to post them online on sites like Freecycle, Craigslist, OfferUp, Nextdoor and Facebook Marketplace. This can be a good idea for furniture and larger items that non-profit groups may not be able to easily transport. If you have valuable furnishings or antiques, you may consider bringing them to a local consignment store to be sold.

There are so many benefits to decluttering your home, and it feels wonderful to know that your discards are going to someone who will value them.

Tidying expert Marie Kondo said it best, “ The best way to find out what we really need is to get rid of what we don’t.”

FirstService Residential: Red Nose Day May 21st

Planned Companies: Donating protective masks to community facilities

Rob Francis donates 2,000 to post acute care center

Rob Francis, President and CEO of Planned Companies, donates 2,000 protective masks to Atrium Post Acute Care

Planned Companies continues to demonstrate its commitment to protecting its own team members during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, but it’s also giving back to support communities in need. Many who are in greatest need of PPE are challenged to obtain it. This potentially life-saving equipment is in short supply in many parts of the country.

On Friday, April 24,  Planned Companies President and CEO Rob Francis presented donations of valuable protective masks to Atrium Post-Acute Care of Park Ridge and the New Jersey Veterans Home at Paramus.

Each facility received 2,000 masks.

Planned Companies has also launched an educational series designed to provide up-to-date and relevant information to help everyone through the current crisis. Click here for links to valuable resources or recorded webinars. 

   

FirstService Residential: Supporting Community Access in NYC

Community Access expands opportunities for people living with mental concerns to recover from trauma and discrimination through affordable housing, training, advocacy and healing-focused services.

Currently, 1,600 people call the Community Access facility home. They are in need of supplies, and we hope you can help.

  • Masks: They are in need of 5,000 cloth face coverings. You can send them from an online retailer or make your own in accordance with CDC guidelines.
  • Hygiene kits: Residents are in need of basic toiletries such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, shampoo and more. You can put together small kits for each person in need.
  • Little things for entertainment: Most of the residents are alone during this time so any games, cards or crafts could truly brighten their day.

If none of these options work for you, we are also accepting monetary donations.

If you would like to participate contact Mandy Shafer (mandy.shafer@fsresidential)  in Human Resources for more details. The goal is to start distributing supplies ASAP and continue throughout the month of May.

California Closets: Collecting Donations for Pace Center for Girls in Southwest Florida

Through the end of August, California Closets of Southwest Florida will be hosting its 4th annual clothing drive in support of Pace Center for Girls.

Donated clothing, shoes, handbags, and jewelry will be delivered to Pace’s upcoming annual Love That Dress event during which community members can purchase tickets to “shop” the collected items. All proceeds support Pace’s ongoing mission to aid women ages 11-18 who are struggling with poverty, substance abuse, domestic violence, foster home placement, neglect, grief, incarceration of a family member and physical, emotional, or sexual abuse.

In exchange for a clothing donation, California Closets’ local clients can receive up to 15% off their next project.

California Closets of Southwest Florida is the largest single contributor to the clothing drive and owner Suzi Woods sits on the board.

DO YOU HAVE CLOTHING TO DONATE? If so, please send donations to Pace Center for Girls, 3800 Evans Ave, Fort Myers, FL 33901.

You can also join the donation drive virtually: Use the hashtag #makespaceforpace and post a video of yourself “making space for Pace” as you clean out your own closets. Challenge your friends to do the same.

CertaPro Painters of Minnetonka, MN: Supporting the ICA Food Shelf

CertaPro Painters of Minnetonka franchisees Cheri and Randy Louwagie are proud to support the noble work of the ICA Food Shelf. 

ICA Food Shelf offers hope as they provide assistance to those in need. We understand this and have donated $500 outright and will donate $50 for every exterior project completed by May 31, 2020. Please join us to support those in need!

Call today for your free estimate 952-994-4443 or visit minnetonka.certapro.com to schedule online. We are currently offering virtual estimates. 

  

California Closets: Oregon Team Donates 1,278 Pairs of Shoes for Soles4Soles

“Something as simple as a pair of shoes can make a big difference.”

People living in poverty want better lives but many lack opportunity. Soles4Souls turns unwanted shoes and clothing into hope, by keeping them from going to waste and putting them to good use – providing relief, creating jobs, and empowering people to break the cycle of poverty.

Oregon General Manager, Nicole Kypreos, and her team recently collected and donated 1,278 shoes during their annual Soles4Souls shoe drive, that wrapped up in January.

Shoes translate to basic essentials for families in need in the developing world. The shoes donated benefit Soles4Souls’ international micro-enterprise program, which offers a powerful and sustainable path for people to create small businesses, selling shoes to lift themselves and their families out of poverty.

The shoes donated by the Oregon team will create enough income to provide a full year of food, shelter, and education for a family in need. What a powerful way to collaborate to help design better lives.

Thank you to Nicole Kypreos and her entire team for helping to make such a positive difference in the lives of these families in need.

FirstService Residential: WMCCAI Expo Raffle Donations

For every raffle entry we get at the WMCCAI Expo we will donate $5 to Alice Ferguson Foundation to promote the environmental sustainability of the Potomac River Watershed.

FirstService Residential: Help Victims of Trauma and Abuse through The SAFE Alliance Basic Needs Drive

FirstService Residential Austin, TX is conducting a drive to collect items for The SAFE Alliance (The Stop Abuse for Everyone Alliance) from February 3rd to February 26th. The SAFE Alliance is a merger of Austin Children’s Shelter and SafePlace, both long-standing and respected human service agencies in Austin serving the survivors of child abuse, sexual assault and exploitation, and domestic violence. The SAFE Alliance provides comprehensive services to survivors of trauma and abuse. They advocate for improved response systems for those whose lives are touched by violence and abuse while working to create just and safe communities. They provide housing, healing and support via the Austin Children’s Shelter and SAFE campuses.

The Austin team is requesting the following items to assist with basic needs in the facilities:

• Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, lotion • Brushes, hair accessories, and hair products • OTC medications (vitamins, aspirin, allergy) • Sizes 4, 5, & 6 diapers, pull-ups, and baby wipes • Toddler meals & snacks • Pantry items (boxed meals, canned meat, cereal) • Individually packaged snacks (granola bars, fruit bars, etc) • Toiler paper, paper towels, & tissue

Austin’s Lakeway office will collect all items and drop off at the facility at the completion of the drive.