Baird & Warner Raises Additional $139K For Chicago's COVID-19 Response -- Real Estate Firm's Donation Total Nears $290K
Baird & Warner, Illinois' largest family-owned independent real estate services company, today announced its newest initiative to raise funds for COVID-19 relief has brought in nearly $139,000. As a result of the new collaborative effort led by a collective team across its residential brokerage, mortgage and title business lines, the firm has now donated a total of $289,000 to the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund.
Building on the momentum of its initial $150,000 donation made earlier this year through its philanthropic arm -- recently renamed Good Will Works -- in partnership with the Stephen W. and Susan M. Baird Foundation, Baird & Warner created a "One-Stop Shop Gives Back" initiative. For every one of its agents' residential or commercial transactions in May and June that leveraged Key Mortgage Services or Baird & Warner Title Services, the Good Will Works fund donated $100 to the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. Agents with Baird & Warner Naperville, Baird & Warner Fox Valley and Baird & Warner Northwest Suburban in Arlington Heights raised the most money.
"We're a firm that strongly believes in doing things the right way, and supporting relief for Chicagoland residents and communities is paramount right now," said Stephen Baird, fifth-generation president and CEO of Baird & Warner. "Over the past six months, our 2,400-plus agents have heard or know of a person or business in their community that has suffered because of the pandemic. They realize we're all in this together and the best way to help is to give back to the neighborhoods and people that have given to them over the years."
To help support nonprofit organizations across the region, the Chicago Community Trust joined the city of Chicago and United Way of Metro Chicago at the onset of the coronavirus to launch the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. The funds assist agencies and individuals that help families access basic needs, such as emergency food and supplies, mortgage and utility assistance, as well as direct financial assistance after losing a job due to COVID-19.
For example, Chicago's Lakeview Pantry has used funding to accommodate a 140% increase in the number of individuals seeking emergency food assistance. And Esperanza Health Centers was able to provide approximately 1,880 telemedicine visits, 250 teletherapy appointments and 951 in-clinic visits, plus provide patients and residents in the Little Village neighborhood with free, drive-through COVID-19 testing, as well as a community diaper drive. PADS Lake County used funding to house more than 230 individuals in hotels across the county and to connect more than 200 households with additional services.
Since creating its philanthropic arm in 2002, Baird & Warner has donated nearly $3 million to Chicagoland nonprofits focusing on housing-related causes. Through additional volunteer opportunities, office initiatives and an innovative time-off program for volunteer work, the firm helps its agents, loan officers and staff give thousands of hours of their time to organizations that are making a difference in communities.
Baird & Warner recently renewed the mission of its corporate giving, formerly under the umbrella name of the Good Will Network. Good Will Works is the latest evolution and has a broader mission to promote stronger communities as a whole, so people who live there can lead healthy, safe and prosperous lives. Under Good Will Works, three ways of giving -- as individuals, as neighborhood-based offices and as a company -- are aligned to make a difference.
The firm now offers matching grants for individual volunteer time and donations made to various nonprofits, and supports offices with annual grants to support their communities and neighbors. Finally, Baird & Warner's giving at the company level has a greater emphasis on volunteer events and partnerships with local organizations that work in housing, shelter and community, financial empowerment, fair housing and racial equity.
Baird & Warner's "One-Stop Shop Gives Back" moniker stems from the firm's early adoption of one-stop shopping, which gives clients a more seamless real estate experience when they use Key Mortgage Services, which Baird & Warner integrated in 1988, and Baird & Warner Title Services, which was established in 2003. Nearly one-third of the firm's transaction services over the past year have used some combination of Baird & Warner residential sales, mortgage and title services.