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Growing Hope | The 2022 IREM Day of Beautification

Teamwork truly makes the dream work, especially when that dream is a refreshed courtyard! Earlier this month, our longtime corporate partners at IREM and more than 50 volunteers from nearly 30 member organizations donated some serious sweat equity to beautifying the family courtyard of our Aurora campus. From carting wheelbarrows of mulch across the property to weeding, planting, and painting, this group of caring individuals braved the 95 degree heat to provide a place of respite for our families as they navigate a life-threatening diagnosis. Along the way, they reconnected with old friends, expanded their industry networks, and came together as a team to give back. Here are just a few of the stories behind their generosity and compassion. Over at the garden beds, Jeanette from Baceline Group spent the morning sanding boxes in preparation for a new coat of stain. “To me, this is making a difference. I didn’t know what Brent’s Place was before I came but now I’m so grateful there’s a place like this for families.”

Friends Lisa and Brandy quickly learned the importance of teamwork and laughs to get the job done, quipping: “Friends who mulch together, stay together!” Lisa and Brandy have a combined volunteer history of more than 20 years. Lisa’s interest in supporting Brent’s Place stems from childhood. Growing up, Lisa remembers how her parents struggled when her brother contracted a life-threatening virus. “My parents had some [health] coverage, but if they hadn’t received government assistance, we wouldn’t have been able to do it. So I know all about how important it is to help out families when they are having a hard time.” That personal connection drives Roberto’s volunteer work, too. Serving as team lead at the Day of Beautification since 2018, Roberto (below, left) said, “My son spent a week in the ICU and just that short period of time made me wonder how these families do it. I know from personal experience that having a place to call your own during a crisis takes some pressure off.”

On the mulching and weeding teams, Bonnie and Ellen (above, center and right) from CBRE appreciated the opportunity to support an organization they believe in while building new connections: “It’s always nice to give back and I love the kids!” Bonnie said. “Plus, this gives us a chance to build relationships with new vendors.” Ellen added, “Bonnie has been a volunteer here for years. It’s so nice to have the support from her to be able to take this day to go serve!” This collaborative experience was exactly what organizers Ira Coleman of Integrity Fire and Debbie Reece of IREM were hoping for: “It’s about sweat equity, hard work, laughs, and teamwork. Their commitment to hard work is providing peace.” Debbie agreed, adding: “We keep coming back and bringing more volunteers to make an even bigger impact! Brent’s Place is part of our family now.” Because of IREM and every volunteer who sweat with purpose in support of our families, our courtyard is now ready to welcome families back, providing a healing connection with nature during a time of great uncertainty. For this and their year-round, multifaceted support, we extend our sincere thanks to IREM!


Looking for ways for your group or company to get involved? We’re seeking corporate and community group volunteers to support our summer special events, including Block Party. Indicate your interest here.





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