Realtors raise money for homeless D211 students for second year
A group of Realtors who banded together last year to help homeless Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 students didn't have to think twice about hosting a second fundraiser this fall.
Last November, the group's first fundraiser had more than 200 guests and raised about $13,000.
"People really responded in a very positive way and the event was really a lot of fun," said Cindy Eich, a real estate agent for RE/MAX at Home and one of the founding members of Realtors Against Homelessness, or RAH. "People again are responding in a very positive way."
On Thursday, Nov. 1, the group is hosting a second fundraiser for the more than 150 students in the district who fall under the category of homeless from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at John Barleycorn, 1100 American Lane in Schaumburg. The night will include a live and silent auction, door prizes and a 50/50 raffle. The $25 tickets include two drinks and appetizers.
Money raised at the event last year was used to provide students with basic needs, from grocery store and gas gift cards to the purchase of a mattress for a student who was sleeping on the basement floor of relative's home, said Eich, who also serves as chairwoman of the District 211 Foundation.
"It's something that we don't think of in this area and yet certainly there are many, many families who have been impacted," she said of the increased number of homeless students.
According to federal laws, students are considered homeless if they lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence; if they share the housing of others due to losing housing from economic hardship; or if they are unaccompanied youth who are forced to find alternate shelter because they are unable to live in their home.
In the 2010-11 school year, 151 students from District 211 were considered homeless. As of November 1, 2011, 157 students were considered homeless. More recent statistics were not immediately available.
Eich said the group -- which consists of 10 people who work for Coldwell Banker, Prudential Starck, Baird & Warner, Keller Williams Realty and RE/MAX -- relies on the district to decide how the money raised from the fundraiser can be best used to help the students.
"I think it's a really wonderful way to support students in the community who are facing homelessness," Eich said of the event, adding that she is hopeful at least 300 people will attend this year.