Home Is Essential to Well-Being
As Realtors® we are in the day-in, day-out business of helping people find “home”. We see up close the importance of that nest to every homeowner. The launching pad for all of the activities, relationships and ventures that make a life. Home is so essential to building a life, whether your home is a mansion or a condo, in the city or the country. All security, nurture and sustenance to carry on in this world comes from your home.
As the family is the fundamental building block of society, the home is the security of the family. Imagine if your home was as precarious as a tent. Dirt floors. No door. No clean water. No safety or security. That’s how millions of destitute people live around the world.
We learned recently that in Haiti alone, there are close to 60,000 people still living in temporary tents as a result of the earthquake seven years ago.* Learning about this need really tugged at our heartstrings. Our brokerage, eXp Realty, has chosen to partner with an amazing non-profit, New Story, that is making a real tangible difference, in a way that is so wonderfully aligned with our industry.
New Story Transforms Slums Into Communities
New Story is a 501c3 non-profit that builds homes for $6,000 in impoverished areas. The infrastructure and salaries are underwritten by private organizations, so that the charity is able to put 100% of our donations to work. The homes are built using local workers and local resources, adding an extra layer of contribution to the local people.
And if that wasn’t awesome enough, New Story has built entire communities which include schools and medical clinics. This creates a real sustainable foundation for a better life. With a safe and stable home, families can maintain their health, parents can focus on jobs and employment, and children can go to school. The trajectory for their life is changed. Check out this short intro video:
Social Enterprise has become more than just a buzzword over the last few years; it is a standard way of doing business today. Many people appreciate doing business with companies that give back to the community in some way, whether the company is a large corporation, or a mom-and-pop company, or an individual.
The strict definition of social enterprise is an organization whose social aims are the primary goal and profits are secondary. The reality of social enterprise in our society is that there are many levels of the philanthropic element. Some businesses add charitable giving to their business plan. On the other end of the continuum, there are organizations that are completely owned and organized by the community.
Regardless of where the business fits into that broad spectrum, being a part of the community is a growing trend for modern business. There is a growing expectation by consumers to do business where they know that their purchase will make a difference in the community. Most of us agree that we’ve been blessed with the means and opportunity to create businesses and work in jobs that provide for a comfortable lifestyle. Giving back is often an integral part of today’s business plan.
Chris and I couldn’t agree more. Giving back to the community is an expression of appreciation for the blessings we have. For many, it is the way to pass on just a bit of the opportunity we have enjoyed. For us, as well as many we know, it is a way to show thankfulness to God.
Why We Love New Story
In an age of internet information and connection, where transparency is available, people have increasingly come to expect it. And we should. When we see that certain established charity organizations have misplaced millions of dollars, or have severely underperformed in their efforts, we have become skeptical of the nonprofit sector. Rightfully so, IMO. An increasing number of people want to know that their dollars are going to do good, not getting absorbed by large salaries and infrastructure, or simply disappearing.
Transparency is a value that is well aligned with the culture at eXp Realty. As an agent-owned brokerage, we are all part of the future of our company. Chris and I are impressed by the transparency of the Board of Directors at eXp Realty and appreciate the agent-centric model. With that in mind, it is a very natural partnership with a non-profit that shares that value. Check out this video from CEO and co-founder of New Story, Brett Hagler:
What Went Wrong: How to Fix Charity
Millennials Turn “Charity” Upside Down
We hear often these days about the problems with Millennials, but not having ever been one to jump on a bandwagon…I think the naysayers have it wrong. Here are some Millennials who are challenging the non-profit establishment and turning it upside down. They’ve reinvented the model and made it into something that really works. Something transparent and inclusive of all of us who want to participate.
When I Give, I KNOW I’m Making A Difference
The ministry that New Story provides really resonates with Chris and I as Realtors®…to see families safely housed so they can pursue a healthy life, so children can go to school, and they can have opportunity. We love that we can, even in a small way, be part of something large and life changing. Something sustainable, measurable, and long-lasting.
*Of the several hundred homes that New Story has built in Haiti, 100% have withstood the devastation of Hurricane Matthew! That’s sustainable!
If you’d like to be involved, you can join our current crowdfunding effort: Help eXp Realty Transform Lives!
Or see how to donate, contribute to a family, start a birthday campaign, or start your own Company Campaign: New Story Charity