Last Thursday  was one of the most important days in the Keller Williams year. It was RED day (refer to the title for a parsing of the acronym). RED day is an organized, coming together of Keller Williams agents and staff for the purpose of giving to others. We always say we want to come from contribution, and this is one of the ways we do it. How?

First, we collected food items to donate to local food banks. This year we collected hundreds of pounds of food. At 2:00, trucks from two local food banks were in our parking lot, and a parade of agents, staff, brokers and family members helped load them and send them back to stock their shelves.

According to one food bank staffer, the Easter season depleted their stores, and these donations were desperately needed.

This was less than half of what we collected.

Second, we hosted the Red Cross Bloodmobile in the parking lot. (If you’ve ever longed to see a REALTOR® poked with a needle, this was the time.) This year we collected 21 pints of blood.  Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. Approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U.S. Nearly 7,000 units of platelets and 10,000 units of plasma are needed daily in the U.S. One pint of blood can save up to 3 lives. We love to see that bus pull into our parking lot….that bus always leaves happy.

Third, Planet Aid brought a large van, which we filled with clothing. Clothes that are still wearable are sent off to domestic thrift stores and overseas customers, who distribute them on a micro level to the poorest of the poor. This is how you can see kids in Ethiopia wearing your Old Navy 2002 Fourth of July t-shirt  But Planet Aid also does the coolest thing. Textiles that are no longer wearable are recycled. The benefits are amazing. This year we loaded more than 1,0oo pounds of clothes into that van.

It’s not all selfless. Food is served, music is played, people dance and talk, and someone’s mother made the most amazing baked bean dish ever.

We will be doing this again next May, and if someone from Keller Williams asks you for a donation, please say yes. It means a lot to us.