Giving Hope, Giving Back

By jessephillips |

The holidays are an incredible time of year; our thoughts turn to family, friends, parties, decorating, wrapping gifts and an inordinate amount of yummy food. The music is cheery, the lights seem to shine a little brighter and the simplest thing can make you smile.

This is also the time of year when our thoughts turn to giving back – to those we love and to those in need. The brokers of Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty, give back often and a lot. And during this season of giving, we wanted to highlight some of the charities that they are passionate about individually and also, ways that we as a community can take part in bettering our little corner of the world.



9102591_xl Phillippines Child
Starting in December, the Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty Office in Seattle will have a “Giving Tree” where RSIR staff, brokers and clients will be able to hang an ornament with their name – hoping to decorate our office tree with our generous spirits. The funds will go to support Save the Children, for the Haiyan Typhoon Children’s Relief Fund in the Philippines.

Thousands of children lost everything as Super Typhoon Haiyan wreaked havoc, leaving a path of destruction in its wake. More than 300 miles wide – about the distance from Boston to Philadelphia – the mega storm was one of the worst in recorded history. Save the Children has deployed emergency responders to hard hit areas in the Philippines and has mounted comprehensive relief efforts. Please consider donating today Donate Now.


Jason  From JASON GIBBONS:Jason being adorable

I have been a leader with Young Life Capernaum for almost 2 years and look forward each week to the amazing time we all have together.  Their charitable mission reads: “We reach out to the underserved special needs population with supportive peer-oriented activities and mentoring friendships.”  To me it’s become more about growing friendships than it has been giving my time to a worthy cause.  Everything from bowling to eating pizza while watching movies – if it sounds like something fun to do, we’re doing it.

If you’re interested in giving to Young Life Capernaum or want to learn more, go to




One thing I love about being a realtor is the huge blessing of being able to give back, and give more. Last year I helped sponsor a massive Charity:Water event that raised over $800k to bring clean drinking water to Cambodia. The event was called Drinks 4 Drinks and it was the most fun way to give back thaimage-donate-mediumt I’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing. The beautiful thing about giving is that it’s contagious! It may start as a small idea and small giving, but my giving grew. Dean and Stacy Jones, Principals of RSIR gave, as well as several other brokers. It was beautiful to see the number of people who will now have clean drinking water after this event. By the way, that number is 64,262. And this is just one example that helps relay the spirit in which I love to run my business. Give more! Care more! Love more! And the rest seems to fall into place.

Charity:Water This amazing organization brings clean drinking water to hundreds of thousands of people around the globe. The water crisis is one we, as Americans, rarely think about. But many people around the world spend their entire day gathering water. Often walking miles to fill up a bucket of water – which is often contaminated – only to walk miles back, and to repeat this process every day. Through innovative and amazing well technology, towns around the world are being given wells, which free up the time of the people to be more productive and enjoy their lives. You can donate your birthday, start a campaign, give to a campaign, etc. It’s an AMAZING organization!


Barry Bergner  From Barry Bergner:
17449416_xxl troubled woman
Along with being a broker with Realogics Sotheby’s, I am on the Board of Directors for the Kiwanis Club of Seattle; my passion is working with a Kiwanis Program called Red Light Traffic,  a local non-profit working to end human trafficking. They work to empower victims to become abolitionists, using technology to create tools against human trafficking, providing actionable, real-time reporting to local authorities, educating people and communities, and connecting and empowering communities and organizations to say “NO” to human trafficking together. With an estimated 5.5 million children in human trafficking this as of last year, what the organization needs is collaboration, information and continued recognition. If you are interested in learning more or supporting Red Light Traffic, go to



My career has been spent in and around the concept of finding and making a home. Being without a home is not within that framework. Yet, anyo344ne living and or working downtown cannot help but notice the increasing numbers of those who obviously are without a place to live.

I am passionate about supporting LIHI, The Low Income Housing Institute, because without headlines, parades and politics, since 1991 it has steadily and sustainably developed stable housing solutions and supportive services to increase self-sufficiency. Residents are provided with training in life skills, technology access and financial literacy to assist in maintaining their housing. Activities are provided for the more than 500 children in LIHI housing. These tools are provided to assist individuals and families build their own lives.

It is one of the most productive affordable housing developers in the northwest, owning and/or managing over 1,700 housing units at 50 sites in 6 counties in the Puget Sound area. They also own  and   operate the Urban Rest Stop, a hygiene facility for homeless families and individuals in downtown Seattle. Through innovative partnerships, creative project development and sustainable design features it is building a healthy, strong and committed community. If you’re interested in giving to LIHI or want to learn more, go to


Lynn Sanborn  From LYNN SANBORN

As a long-time Eastsider, my community is also my family. For more than fifteen years, I have been involved with KITH and I currently serve as VP of the Board and recently helped them fundraise over $92,000 at the 2013 Fall fundraiser.welcomehome

KITH is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving homeless and at-risk families; since 1989, KITH has helped homeless families in East King County, by providing transitional and permanent housing, case management and support services which help them move out of homelessness.

When you invest time and resources in KITH, you meet the practical needs of homeless families and support them as they strive to reach independence, step by step. With your help KITH stabilizes families in housing, helping parents and children to achieve their goals and potential, and to break the cycle of poverty.

If you’re interested in giving to KITH or want to learn more, go to


Alex Hayes  From Alex Hayes

Following your passion for giving will make a difference; it’s about commitment, compassion, whatever makes your heart feel warmer. I enjoy volunteering my time and effort throughout the greater Seattle area with the Seattle Animal Shelter. Adoption has become a popular option among prospective pet owners and offers several advantages over purchasing a pet from breeders or pet stores. I highly recommend that people volunteer on any level to help the animals. It is so rewarding!AH3-1024x1024

There are shelters throughout the world that often house dozens of different animals, as well as various rescue organizations that can be consulted when deciding on adoption. Nala was rescued here in Seattle while I was doing volunteer work for Seattle Animal Shelter. I used to run the Big dogs on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 5:30pm, and would go in on Saturdays to do laundry at the shelter (lots of towels, blanket, beds, toys to wash). And Daisy was rescued online through a network of animal rescues sites. I fell in love with Daisy’s sweet face and she was flown to Seattle to me from Los Angeles thanks to amazing Volunteers!

If now is not the right time for you to adopt but you’d really like to get involved in rescue, consider volunteering a little time to groom or spend time with animals, become a foster parent for pets on a temporary basis, or donate much-needed food and other pet supplies. If you’d like to learn more, donate or start volunteering, go to