The multifamily industry touches many lives so here is how to engage your multifamily housing team and get involved in your community.
By Kristina Rauscher and Amy Campbell
Giving back and helping others makes us feel happy.
According to Jason March and Jill Suttie, “a 2006 study by Jorge Moll and colleagues at the National Institute of Health found that when people give to charities, it activates regions of the brain associated with pleasure, social connection, and trust, creating a ‘warm glow’ effect. Scientists also believe that altruistic behavior releases endorphins in the brain, producing the positive feeling known as the ‘helper’s high.’ ”
More and more, people want to support and work for organizations that have a culture of community involvement and support. The multifamily industry touches many lives and therefore, there are many opportunities to give back and get involved. Here are a few tips on how to accomplish good within your organization and at your multifamily communities:
A good first step to getting involved and organizing charitable efforts is to designate a community ambassador or a team of ambassadors.
At P.B. Bell, we have a committee called the Culture Club. In addition to their core responsibilities of communicating our company values, these individuals come together on a biweekly basis to organize social and charitable company events as well as recognize employees who go above and beyond and exemplify company values, including “Show You Care.”
Get Involved With Your Local Multifamily Association
The Arizona Multihousing Charitable Foundation (AMCF) is the philanthropic arm of the Arizona Multihousing Association (AMA).
The AMA believes in giving back to the community through charities that have an impact on their members and residents. We have an AMCF ambassador who communicates and organizes all AMCF efforts at our properties and at the corporate office. Since 2005, the AMCF Big Hearts Committee and dedicated members of the AMA have raised over $1.2 million to support local and statewide charities. Members of the AMCF Big Hearts Committee host annual fundraising events such as the Bowl-A-Thon, Car Raffle, Silent Auction, Dollar-A-Door campaign and more. They believe by working together as an industry, we can and will make a difference.
AMA also offers a 5-Star Program, designed to help reduce criminal activity and improve safety, as well as unite community organizations and individuals. Project S.A.F.E. (Safety Awareness Family Education) is an onsite event component that focuses on educating residents about important safety issues through community partnership. Guest speakers and partners might include the local fire department, YMCA, police department, pest control companies, animal shelters, swim schools, and city parks and recreation.
Support Local Community Efforts and Current Events
Stay on top of current events and identify opportunities to support immediate and seasonal needs, such as disaster relief, pandemic relief, back-to-school drives, homeless aid, food and clothing drives and toy drives.
Reach out and connect with nearby schools and non-profit organizations regarding needs and ask how you can get involved. Invite employees, residents, and vendors to participate and contribute to your cause. The opportunities to give back to the community are endless and can be catered to your company values.
Organize and Offer All Employees Volunteer Opportunities
From community manager and maintenance technician to corporate accountant and I.T. specialist, the various positions and numerous property locations within a multifamily organization can sometimes make it difficult to see or engage with fellow colleagues. At P.B. Bell, we’ve found organizing volunteer opportunities where all employees are invited to join during a workday have been very successful. These events not only bring people together for a good cause, but they also build team morale, familiarity, and connection.
While organizing and offering community, charity and volunteer events are major steps, be sure to request feedback and evaluate participation and impact along the way. Stay involved or continue efforts with high impact and consider trying other efforts if participation is low. Try new things, but don’t be afraid to establish traditions too. Survey employees and ask what their favorite charities are. Encouraging participation throughout the process will further engage your team, build comradery, and yield greater success.
About the authors:
Kristina Rauscher is the marketing director responsible for overseeing corporate marketing initiatives and communications as well as strategic marketing planning for the P.B. Bell portfolio. Her skills and duties include branding, creative direction, digital marketing, advertising, public relations, outreach marketing and events, and she’s a member of the company’s Culture Club.
As director of learning and development, Amy Campbell is responsible for developing and managing P.B. Bell’s training and career development program, P.B. Bell University. This includes more than 800 courses offered online as well as in classroom and onsite training. She also is a member of the Culture Club.
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