The Eastside Co. Real Estate team has always felt it was important to support our community. When we first started practicing real estate we didn’t have the financial resources to donate to charities and schools so we instead donated our time to 826LA’s tutoring program. If you haven’t heard about it I encourage you to stop by their incredibly fun storefront at 1714 Sunset Blvd. Look for the Echo Park Time Travel Mart sign and/or the robot in the window.
A lot has changed since those early start up days. Since 2004 my team and I have been trusted to help represent hundreds of people in our Eastside community to buy and sell residential real estate. This consistent and growing support from our clients has allowed us to provide for our families and we are now fortunate to be in a position to financially give back.
So far we've identified a couple ways we will start giving back: financial donations to schools and charities and community improvement projects. For each home we sell, we will donate to the local public elementary. The greater the home price the larger the donation we can afford. This is a win for students and as the schools improve this will benefit the neighboring home owners. For referrals from friends, family and clients we will donate to the charity of choice of the person providing the referral. Thus far we've donated to environmental funds, cancer research, churches of different denominations and youth programs. The community improvement projects can vary from parkway clean-up and the planting of native plant species to the commission of murals and street art created by local artists. We can’t draw, paint or sculpt but we admire those that devote their life to pursuing the arts and feel proud to support them. Along with helping local artists it is our hope to interest the younger members of our community to get involved with our projects to learn and take pride in their community. Being a new parent myself I would think anything artistic that can distract from screen time can't hurt.
Our first community improvement project is the blighted parkway on the eastern side Silver Lake Blvd between Rockford and Cove. The parkway is unkempt, overgrown with weeds, trash, cigarette butts, dead trees and dog waste. We thought, “would it be crazy to think that if this stretch of land was planted with attractive drought tolerant foliage then people would maybe litter less and pick up their dog waste. We started by sending letters to the neighbors who lived closest to the parkway to learn if anyone had any objection to the planting we were planning. To our surprise not only was there no objection there were kind words of support and plant donations. We’ve even been invited into a couple homes to discuss our plans and have made friends in the process.
As we started the clean up we noticed a stretch of retaining wall on the same parkway that was covered in graffiti and local gang tagging. The wall had a significant crack in it and needed to be repaired or replaced so until then we thought a mural would help prevent future tagging and would give walkers and joggers something to enjoy as they went by. For many years we had appreciated the friendly and joyful mural work of local artist Sky Poet and thought she may be a good fit for the project. We direct messaged her through Instagram to see if she’d be interested in being commissioning to create something for the retaining wall. She not only was interested she was enthusiastic about our mission and the motivation behind the mural. Sky came up with a design and we invited parents and kids from the neighborhood who came out and helped paint it.
We look forward to identifying other areas in which we can make a positive impact and encourage suggestions. Suggestions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org