One day can make a difference. Just ask the 23 Realtors who volunteered at the Kihei Youth Center as part of the annual Windermere Community Service Day on Friday, June 7.

Every year, Windermere Real Estate offices throughout the Western U.S. close their doors for one day so brokers and agents can make a positive difference in their communities. The annual day of community service was conceived in 1984 after a group of real estate agents teamed up to give a local elementary school some much-needed TLC. Since then, on its designated Windermere Community Service Day, Windermere Real Estate has helped improve local communities in seven states through a variety of neighborhood-enhancing projects.

This year, Wailea Realty Corp., a Boutique of Windermere Real Estate focused its efforts on the Kihei Youth Center. The volunteers rolled up their sleeves and spent the day washing windows, cleaning dusty ceiling fans, sprucing up the center’s homework room, and sanding and painting picnic tables. Additionally, Wailea Realty Corp., a Boutique of Windermere Real Estate purchased and delivered a brand-new Elkay EZH2O bottle filling station to the center so kids and staff members can fill and refill their water bottles or canisters (and simultaneously reduce the use of single-use plastics).

Since the youth center opened its doors on the grounds of the Kenolio Recreation Complex in 1983, it has strengthened the community by promoting positive youth and family development and providing educational, recreational, vocational, cultural, social and prevention programs. The drop-in center offers a safe, fun and positive place for kids ages 8 to 18 to go after school and during summer breaks. All Kihei Youth Center members are familiar with the “house rules” and behavior expectations, which include the center’s ABCs: attitude, behavior and character. They also learn Hawaiian values, including kahiau (selfless generosity), along with the timeless values of honesty, loyalty, integrity and respect.

“We had a great day volunteering and serving at the Kihei Youth Center,” said co-owner and principal broker Brad MacArthur. “Mahalo to all of the agents who came and helped and mahalo to the Kihei Youth Center for all that you do in our community and for providing a safe and fun place for youth.”

Like MacArthur, co-owner and broker-in-charge Tom Tezak was thrilled by the end result. “It was so neat to see everyone working together. And when we were done, we walked away feeling so positive,” he said. “The kids and staff at the Kihei Youth Center were so appreciative. Our company is committed to supporting the youth in our community and this is just one of the many ways we do it.”

This is the second time the youth center was chosen as the beneficiary of Windermere Community Service Day. In 2017, agents cleaned and made repairs to the facility and served lunch to 75 kids and staff members. Last year, Wailea Realty Corp., a Boutique of Windermere Real Estate partnered with the Pacific Whale Foundation to collect rubbish along the Kahului Harbor shoreline to commemorate World Oceans Day on Friday, June 8.

The company routinely pitches in for a good cause: Among other things, it has donated $32,000 to the Assistance Dogs of Hawaii program; organized the Maui Monopoly tournament to raise funds for the Maui Food Bank and Habitat for Humanitysponsored basketballMAUI (a nonprofit organization that helps youth develop athletic skills and character through the game of basketball); and brought world-renowned motivational speaker Nick Vujicic to Maui to share his message of hope and inspiration with teens.

The Kihei Youth Center relies on grants and donations to keep its programs up and running; any monetary or in-kind contributions are welcomed and appreciated. To learn more about the Kihei Youth Center or to inquire about membership, donor or volunteer opportunities, call 879-8698, email kiheiyouthcenteronmaui@yahoo.com or visit www.facebook.com/pages/Kihei-Youth-Center/104229716306684. To learn more about the annual Windermere Community Service Day, visit www.facebook.com/WindermereRealEstate. To see the agents in action, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bA0ZZzv4tI.

Photo credit: Liza Pierce
The Maui News – June 29, 2019

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