Real Estate Centre has raised $45,064 for STARS and HALO air ambulance services through its annual charity auction event, held Jan. 19 at Readymade Community Centre in Coaldale.
Funds were split between the two services, with 75 per cent going to STARS and 25 per cent to HALO.
Real Estate Centre has been able to support a number of different charities through the annual event since its inception in 2014.
This year’s event was the first one in three years, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Being our first year back, we had planned for fewer attendees and fewer donations than usual. But even with those parameters in place, we still did exceptionally well,” says Heleen Jacobsen, broker, manager and co-owner of Real Estate Centre’s various locations.
Despite providing lifesaving services, STARS and HALO receive very little in government funding and rely heavily on sponsors and donations.
“It’s such a good cause to be fundraising for and it’s a cause that’s near and dear to my heart,” Heleen says.
“You never know how quickly you can have something happen in your life where you need these services. We hope we never do, but it can happen just like that.”
Shayla Farough, advertising and resource co-ordinator for Real Estate Centre, echoed Heleen’s sentiments about the services.
“I grew up in a rural community. In fact, HALO would be our call if something ever happened to my family growing up, so I think it’s great that we can do our part to support these organizations,” Shayla says.
According to Heleen, her company wished to support these two services specifically because of the impact they have on the communities they serve.
Many of the company’s offices throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan operate in small towns and rural communities — including Crowsnest Pass. These areas rely on air ambulance services in cases where people require immediate emergency medical attention.
“Sometimes, if you just take a local charity, then that only would work for that office. So we felt that this charity, of course, while near and dear to our hearts, it also affects all of our offices,” Heleen says.
Real Estate Centre conducted both silent and live auctions at the event to raise money, on top of receiving donations from many individual donors and sponsors. Some of the auctioned items went for hundreds and even thousands of dollars.
Congratulations to Real Estate Centre for the extremely successful charity auction. The money raised will go a long way in supporting these emergency services.