A home is much more than just a house, it’s a place where people create an opportunity to build a life together, a place where the many hours of blood, sweat and tears have the potential to turn into equity, pride of ownership and most importantly for the majority of us, lasting memories.
We never lose sight of that here, which is why our mission is to support community volunteer initiatives that are housing-related. The idea that home ownership is an essential aspect of building vibrant, stable communities is not exactly new. In study after study, home ownership has been shown to increase volunteer involvement, improve health and decrease crime. Of course, home ownership also generates the funds that communities need to operate through tax revenues.
Basically, home owners have a vested interest in supporting the communities where they live and work. As REALTORS®, we are no different, so with all of these lofty ideals in mind, we focus on taking action in the community through service and volunteerism. Here are a few of the various programs and projects we have designed, planned and implemented with local and state nonprofits recently:
- Willowdale Urban Farm - In addition to a sanctuary/green space for the neighborhood, this urban farm grows produce to supply local food deserts and provides an interactive learning space for the next generation.
- Feed ILM - Our partnership with Feed ILM is a continuous effort to collect food for people in need in the community through canned food donations.
- WARM Work Days - Cape Fear REALTOR® members partnered with WARM (Wilmington Area Rebuilding Ministry) on October 14th and November 18th to make several homes safer for homeowners in need, one of whom didn't have running water for 10 years. Together, we landscaped, installed appliances, painted siding, caulked windows, rebuilt an outdoor staircase and landing, and more.
- REALTOR® Action Day - Every year, REALTORS® get radical by taking part in a regional day of community service across the Wilmington area. This is a one-day event mobilizing the entire membership to support community affairs activities and make a dramatic, positive impact.
- Habitat for Humanity - In May of this year, we celebrated the completion of our first home build with Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity. In addition to raising over $50,000 in funds, Cape Fear REALTOR® members provided many hours of labor on Saturday build days. As a result, we were able to finish a four bedroom, energy efficient home in only five months.
Our partnership with Habitat for Humanity is a project of which I am particularly proud, because our mission for home ownership and housing affordability align. Providing an opportunity for safe, affordable housing is sort of a no-brainer for me: the people who work here in our community need to be able to afford to live here.
It’s worth pointing out the person we assisted alongside Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity worked extremely hard to make her dream of becoming a home owner a reality. In addition to completing the Habitat home ownership program, which includes budget coaching and a variety of educational courses centered on home ownership, she put forth 250 hours of sweat equity.
Our members never miss an opportunity to create a stronger, healthier community, and I am looking forward to what the future will bring. To learn more, visit capefear.realtor
Tom Gale is the 2021 president of Cape Fear REALTORS®, an organization with nearly 3,300 members who serve as the region’s Voice of Real Estate. Cape Fear REALTORS®, through advocacy, education, and community involvement, support efforts to protect the rights of property owners, promote the availability of housing, and provide resources to guarantee every individual has the right to share in the “American Dream.” For further information on this topic and the association, please visit www.capefear.realtor or contact the Cape Fear REALTORS® at 910-762-7400.