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home : business : business August 22, 2017

5/16/2017 12:17:00 PM
RED Day means giving back to local communities
Keller Williams associates pitched in at Harmony Farm Sanctuary. photo by Jodi Schneider McNamee
+ click to enlarge
Keller Williams associates pitched in at Harmony Farm Sanctuary. photo by Jodi Schneider McNamee

By Jodi Schneider McNamee

Keller Williams Central Oregon reality associates shut down their offices on Thursday, May 11 for the annual RED Day effort.

RED Day (Renew, Energize, Donate) is an initiative dedicated to celebrating Keller Williams Realty's year-round commitment to improving their local communities.

Each year, on the second Thursday in May, tens of thousands of associates from across the country participate in a wide range of projects ranging from food and blood drives to rebuilding homes and schools for community members in need.

Keller Williams Realty has associates throughout Central Oregon and divided up into three groups to "Give Where They Live" as part of RED Day.

"We are excited to be closing our offices and serving our community at Harmony Farm Sanctuary in Sisters, Equine Outreach in Bend, and doing highway clean up along (Highway) 97 between Bend and Redmond," said Heidi Spiker, Keller Williams broker in Bend who was part of the Highway 97 cleanup team.

"The projects are chosen through our Keller Williams culture committee," said Carol Zosel of Sisters. "We meet and figure where would we'd like to spend our volunteer time on RED Day."

Zosel is a member of the culture committee and supports the efforts of Harmony Farm Sanctuary, and determined that helping the non-profit would be a great volunteer effort for Keller Williams for RED Day in Sisters.

Harmony Farm Sanctuary (HFS) was built to create a safe place for rescued and adopted animals. They provide rehabilitation when needed and a forever home. Their animals include pot-bellied pigs, horses, donkeys, goats, chickens, ducks, sheep, bunnies and one bouncy calf named Norman.

On Thursday morning, 13 Keller Williams agents met at Harmony Farm for a morning of service.

The cool rainy weather didn't dampen anyone's spirit as they spent the morning with the animals doing a variety of projects.

"It was an awesome day. It poured on us in the morning but that didn't deter any of the volunteers from working hard," said Robine Bots, HFS founder. "We started painting my therapy office, got tons of poop removed from the property and donated it to Mahonia Gardens, set several fence posts, dug a trench for a new waterline and cleaned all the animal enclosures and the water troughs.

"The outpouring of love and hard work and recognition for what we do at our little farm moved me to tears."

Lorraine Abney, market center administrator at Keller Williams Central Oregon, headed up the Adopt-A-Highway program that provides an opportunity for all volunteers to clean up litter and remove noxious weeds along state highways. RED Day volunteers contributed a much-needed trash cleanup of Highway 97.

"There were 40 volunteers and it was a rewarding experience. It felt wonderful to drive down the highway and see our beautiful community without litter and garbage," Abney said.

Jaynee Beck, a Bend Keller Williams broker, organized the RED Day volunteers who helped with maintenance of stalls and grounds for Equine Outreach Horse Rescue in Bend, founded by Joan Steelhammer.

"One thing our volunteers did was scrape all the loafing sheds and paint them. It was hard work, but we did it and all nine buildings look great," said Beck.

Equine Outreach facilitates the rescue, rehabilitation and permanent placement of abused, neglected and unwanted equines, and promotes equine awareness and responsible guardianship.

At the end of the day the 80 Keller Williams volunteers from all three teams enjoyed a barbecue at Sam Johnson Park in Redmond.

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