It’s a Perfect Time for Giving!

It’s a Perfect Time for Giving!


Looking to share your bounty this holiday season? Below are some of our favorite local, vetted organizations who can use your time, household items, toys, and more to help improve the lives of homeless and low-income families in our area. You might also check out these tips on how to make the most of charitable giving.


Northwest Harvest’s mission is to end hunger in Washington. They partner with 375 food pantries, meal programs, and high-need schools across the state to provide nutritious food and promote good health for those in need. You can help by volunteering at the Cherry Street Food Bank in Seattle (children in 3rd grade or older are welcome to volunteer with you!). You can also host a virtual food drive or make a cash/vehicle donation.
Cherry Street Food Bank: 711 Cherry Street, Seattle
Kent Warehouse: 22220 68th Ave S, Kent


Mary’s Place helps homeless women, children and families from the greater King County area. With a list of families that has double this year, the need for help is higher than ever. You or your organization might consider supporting their giving tree (donations due by December 16th) or contributing their No Child Sleeps Outside campaign. You can also volunteer your time, donate toiletries/baby items, or share your used clothing, blankets, and coats.
Donation Center in SODO:
9 South Nevada St, Seattle
Emergency Family Shelter:
314 Bell St, Seattle


Hopelink provides critical services to homeless and low-income families, children, seniors, and people with disabilities on north and east King County. You can help by donating food or grocery gift cards to their food bank, contributing unwrapped toys to their holiday gift room, or volunteering to help with their holiday giving events.
10675 Willows Road NE Suite 275, Redmond


Each night in Seattle, nearly 1,000 young people are homeless. YouthCare builds confidence and self-sufficiency for homeless youth by providing a continuum of care that includes outreach, basic services, emergency shelter, housing, counseling, education, and employment training. Lend a hand by volunteering, hosting a drive, hiring a YouthCare graduate, or donating warm clothing to the “We’ve Got Your Covered” drive.
2500 NE 54th Street, Seattle
Drop off cold weather clothing donations at our Windermere office: 2737 77th Ave SE, Suite 100, Mercer Island


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Did you know less than 50% of youth in foster care graduate from high school? Treehouse seeks to level the playing field by providing academic and other essential support foster kids need to graduate at the same rate as their peers, with a plan for their future. You can help by volunteering, hosting a drive or donating to their holiday program.
851 Houser Way N, Renton


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Did you know less than 50% of youth in foster care graduate from high school? Treehouse seeks to level the playing field by providing academic and other essential support foster kids need to graduate at the same rate as their peers, with a plan for their future. You can help by volunteering, hosting a drive or donating to their holiday program.
2100 24th Ave South, Suite 200, Seattle


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Eastside Baby Corner (East King County) and Westside Baby (West King County) both collect, purchase, and distribute essential care items such as formula, diapers, carseats, warm coats, school supplies, and more for babies and children in need. You can help out by volunteering, donating, or organizing a drive.

Eastside Baby Corner:

1510 NW Maple St. in Issaquah

Westside Baby:
10002 14th Ave. SW, Seattle
Since 1947, The U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots program has distributed more than 452 million toys to more than 209 million needy children. Consider helping out this year by donating a new toy, volunteering, or asking your organization to become a toy drop site.
Click Here for Toy Drop Off Locations
Coordinator: Gunnery Sergeant James Wells, 253.260.4826
Every year, nearly 40% of our country’s food ends up in landfills, while millions go hungry. Food Lifeline attempts to solve both problems by rescuing millions of pounds of surplus food from farmers, manufacturers, grocery stores, and restaurants. They then deliver this healthy and nutritious food to 275 food banks, shelters and meal programs across Western Washington–providing 90,000 meals every day. You can help by volunteering (opportunities are available for kids as young as 6, too!), donating funds or hosting a food drive.
815 S 96th St, Seattle


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Wellspring helps low-income and vulnerable individuals, children and families in Seattle and King County address issues such as mental health, family homelessness, early learning, basic needs, and domestic violence intervention. Each year they help thousands of children and families break cycles of instability, homelessness, and adversity to achieve positive, permanent change. You can help by donating to their Giving Together holiday campaign or getting your children involved in the Kids Helping Kids youth philanthropy program.
1900 Rainier Avenue South, Seattle


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Founded and run by a group of philanthropic women over 100 years ago, Seattle Children’s mission is to provide hope, care and cures to help every child live the healthiest and most fulfilling life possible. You can help their patients by donating a new toy or gift card, volunteering, contributing funds, or supporting one of its guilds (such as the Project Kids Cancer Cure Guild).
4800 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle

Windermere Real Estate & The Seattle Seahawks #Tacklehomelessness: SEA vs SF on 9/25

tacklehomelessness_image-for-social-mediaWindermere Real Estate has embarked on a fantastic partnership with the Seattle Seahawks. As the official real estate company of the Seattle Seahawks, we are working with them to provide services and support to homeless youth in the Seattle area via the #tacklehomelessness campaign. For each home game the Seahawks play, the Windermere Foundation will donate $100 per Seahawks tackle to YouthCare.

At the season opener against the Miami Dolphins, the Seahawks had 31 tackles. This resulted in a $3,100 donation to YouthCare, which will ensure more homeless youth are able to stay warm, dry, and have access to basic necessities.

On Sunday, September 25th, the Seahawks will be playing at home once again, against the San Francisco 49ers. Kickoff is 1:05pm PST.  Whether you are at Century Link, or watching the game at home, cheer loudly every time the Seahawks tackle a 49er – it will be another $100 donated to #tacklehomelessness!

Be watching our Facebook page, or Instagram profile @windemere_mi, on Monday, 9/26, for the final donation tally.

Summer camps provide invaluable learning and socialization opportunities for youth

content_Summer_Camps___Programs_collage2 Originally posted on Windermere Blog, written by Marilou Ubungen

Child development professionals recognize the camp experience as being valuable in helping children mature socially, emotionally, intellectually, morally, and physically. Summer camps and summer programs for youth not only keep them occupied while on break from school, it provides them with a safe place to be while their parents are at work, and gives them learning experiences that will help them throughout their lives.

Through camps and other summer programs, children can make friends, reconnect with nature, learn social skills, have free time for unstructured play, grow more independent, develop life-long skills, unplug from technology, gain resiliency, build self-confidence, and spend their day being physically active. And for some youth, it gets them away from an unhealthy environment that may exist in their neighborhood.

Grants from the Windermere Foundation have allowed many of our Windermere Real Estate offices to support local organizations that provide summer activities to kids. Funding has also allowed for the expansion of existing programs, thus enabling them to serve even more children. And many of these programs also offer need-based financial assistance or scholarships that make it possible for children from low-income families to attend.

Here are just a few of the organizations that Windermere Real Estate offices have supported:

Boys & Girls Club of El Sobrante offers programs in five core areas (character and leadership development; education and career development; health and life skills; the arts; and sports, fitness, and recreation). All programs are designed to produce positive outcomes for youth and reinforce necessary life skills.

Camp Kiwanilong in Clatsop County, Oregon provides a summer youth resident program consisting of several five-to-seven-day overnight camping sessions and are designed to provide a positive environment, nurture self-esteem, and develop lasting relationships.

Camp Mak-A-Dream in Montana provides cost-free experiences in an intimate community setting for children, teens, young adults, women, and families affected by cancer, as well as programs for children who have a sibling or a parent with cancer.

Donald W. Reynolds Boys & Girls Club offers full-day summer programs for children in Henderson, Nevada. Core programs are also available that engage young people in activities with adults, peers and family members that enable them to reach their full potential.

Peer Solutions in Arizona provides peer-led activities year-round to promote positive youth development. Students become ambassadors of change and model positive behaviors, which in turn foster healthy families and communities.

Quest Summer Day Camp in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho offers a positive summer alternative for families with kids in the six-to-fourteen age group. That includes active learning and recreational experiences in the course of 10 weeks throughout the summer. Matching scholarships are available to families who can only pay a portion of the cost for their children to attend.

Royal Family Kids provides summer camps for children in the foster care system so they can experience positive memories. There are currently 12 camps and 3 clubs in Washington, and the average camp serves 45-50 children each summer.

Want to help make a difference in children’s lives over the summer? Then consider making a donation to the Windermere Foundation or donating directly to organizations that provide summer camps and programs for children in need in your community.

To learn more about the Windermere Foundation, visit

Windermere Foundation: making a positive difference in the lives of our neighbors in need

If you’ve ever worked with a Windermere broker, then you too are a part of the Windermere Foundation. Every time one of our brokers helps a client buy or sell a home a portion of their commission goes to the Windermere Foundation. And you’ve helped us achieve the $30 million milestone we reached during 2015, which has supported programs and organizations that provide shelter, food, children’s programs, emergency assistance, and other services since 1989.

On behalf of everyone at Windermere Real Estate, thank you! Windermere produced the following video to highlight what you’ve done, through the Windermere Foundation, to make a difference in your community.

Windermere Foundation 2015 – Thank You For Helping Reach $30 Million In Donations!

This post was originally published on Windermere Blog.

If you’ve bought or sold a home through Windermere Real Estate, you’re a part of the Windermere Foundation, and you’ve helped make a positive difference in the lives of your neighbors in need. The following infographic shows the types of services funded by the Windermere Foundation, and illustrates how even a small amount can make a big difference for low-income and homeless children and their families.

The Windermere Foundation had a goal to reach $30 million in total donations by the end of 2015. Thanks to the generosity of Windermere owners, agents, staff, and our community partners, we reached that goal three months early! Because of this we were able to fulfill 636 grants and help 409 organizations that provide goods and services to those in need in our communities.

If you’d like to help support programs in your community, please click here.

To learn more about the Windermere Foundation, visit


Windermere Mercer Island Volunteers At Mary’s Place

It’s amazing how international a smile is. ~ Doug McKiernan

On Monday, August 24th, several Windermere Mercer Island brokers gathered to load up all the shoes collected during the Kicks For Kids Shoe Drive. It was time to take them over to Mary’s Place in Seattle. Kids from around the city would be arriving with their families to take part in a back-to-school event at Mary’s Place, so they could get fitted for a new pair of shoes and receive a backpack filled with school supplies. It took two good-sized vehicles to transport all the shoes, and a few more to transport all the WindermereMI volunteers over to Seattle.

Volunteers unloaded the vehicles, transported shoes into the building and set them up the on tables in the fitting area. And when the doors opened to let the families in, our brokers were so happy to be there helping out. Windermere Mercer Island owner Julie Barrows shared, “It was truly heartwarming to be able to help fill a need so immense. The smile on so many faces made it all worthwhile.” Nicole Demers-Changelo had this experience to share, “I was greeted to smiles and clapping from a mother who entrusted me to take her 1 year old son, who wasn’t wearing any shoes, by himself with me to pick out a pair of shoes and a little backpack. I wrangled the wiggle worm and kept him happy while he tried on a handful of shoes and his mother was so proud that he came out smiling.”

Lara Baca really enjoyed meeting a special young lady at Mary’s Place. “I met a 15 year old girl. I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up. She replied a lawyer. She asked if I worked at Mary’s Place. I said was volunteering. She asked if she could volunteer tomorrow. When we got her shoes and backpack I introduced her to one of the head staff. They made arrangements to meet today so she could start volunteering. She was extremely excited. I was impressed by her courage and desire to help others.”

Doug McKiernan described helping a 4 year old girl pick out a pair of shoes, “[she] didn’t speak much, or any, English. She was so tiny, I must have looked like a giant to her. She held on to two of my fingers and we went back to find a pair of shoes and backpack. I showed her a pair of pink Cinderella shoes and her face lit up in a big smile. She tried them on and kept nodding her head yes to every question about how they fit. I finally got her to get up and walk in them and discovered that she had to shuffle to keep them on. Too big. Thankfully we found another pair of pink shoes in her size that she really liked also. It’s amazing how international a smile is.”

Erin Ewing shared, “I had the pleasure of helping fit two special boys for shoes. The younger boy is going into the second grade and was a Captain America fan. He was extremely happy when we found a pair of Captain America slip on shoes in his size. I asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up, and he said he wanted to be a hunter. When he saw that there was a camouflage print backpack available as well, you should have seen his eyes light up! The older guy is going to be a freshman at Garfield High School. We talked about the school and all the cool stuff available for Garfield students. I recently showed a family homes in the Garfield service area, and was telling this young man about how coveted the school was and that he should really enjoy it there. He’s new to the Seattle area, so I think our conversation helped ease some of his anxiety about going to a new school.”

We owe a big thank you to everyone who volunteered to get the shoes to Mary’s Place and helped with fittings: Anni Zilz, Bonnie Sanborn, Cherrie Lee, Cynthia Schoonmaker, Doug McKiernan, Erin Ewing, Erin Sirianni, Julie Barrows, Kelly Weisfield, Lara Baca, Nicole Demers-Changelo, Peni Scwartz, and Seamus Pelan.

Photos Courtesy Of Anni Zilz, Cherrie Lee, Erin Ewing and Julie Barrows

Windermere Foundation: What’s Been Accomplished Since 1989

If you have worked with a Windermere Real Estate agent to buy or sell a home, your transaction helped provide funds to the Windermere Foundation. Those dollars were used to improve the lives of your neighbors in need. The infographic below illustrates the services funded by the Windermere Foundation, and demostrates how even a small amount can make a big difference for low-income children and their families.

The Windermere Foundation’s goal is to reach $30 million in total donations by the end of 2015 – and we’re well on our way. Thanks to the generosity of Windermere owners, agents, staff, and our community partners, last year we passed the $28 million mark. Less than $2 million to go!

Please visit to learn more about the Foundation’s mission. And if you’d like to help us reach our goal, there is an online donation button on the web page, or you may send a check to The Windermere Foundation, 5424 Sand Point Way NE Seattle, WA 98105.

Thank you so much for your support through out the years. You truly have made a difference in the lives of many people.

Windermere-Foundation-Info-Graphic-2014 This infographic originally appeared on Windermere Blog.

Windermere Foundation Year In Review 2014 – 25 years and counting!

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2014 was a banner year for Windermere Foundation, which celebrated its 25th anniversary. Originally featured on Windermere Blog, Christine Wood’s blog post shares highlights from this 25th year via the Windermere Foundation’s Year In Review for 2014. Excerpts from the post are below. To read the whole blog post, please click here.

This past year, the Windermere Foundation had a milestone anniversary, celebrating 25 years of supporting programs and organizations that provide shelter, clothing, children’s programs, emergency assistance, and other services to low-income and homeless families. What started in 1989 as a grassroots foundation serving families in need in Washington State, has grown to encompass ten states and raised over $28 million—bringing us closer to reaching our fundraising goal of $30 million by the end of 2015.

It was a busy year for our Windermere agents and offices, whose participation and contributions make our funding possible. Here are some highlights from the past year…

Charity Challenge: We kicked off our anniversary celebration in March with the Windermere Foundation 25th Anniversary Charity Challenge. Twenty-one non-profit organizations were nominated by Windermere offices to compete via Facebook for $25,000. Almost 19,000 people voted to help determine the winners. The five non-profits that received the most votes were Hand in Hand, Friends of the Children of Portland, Family Promise of Spokane, Boys and Girls Club of El Sobrante, and Yavapai CASA for Kids, Inc. Each organization received $25,000, for a total donation of $125,000 from the Windermere Foundation.

Windermere Kicks for Kids: In August, Windermere offices in the greater Seattle area collected over 1,400 pairs of sneakers during a shoe drive campaign to benefit Boys & Girls Club of King County and Mary’s Place. Many of our offices came up with creative ways to collect shoes, including the Windermere office in Mercer Island, WA, which took the award for collecting the most shoes.

Food Drives: Windermere offices also collected food during the holiday season. The Mukilteo, WA office collected over 4,600 pounds of food and over $1,000 in cash donations. The Windermere Professional Partners offices in Tacoma, WA collected and delivered over 2,500 pounds of food and $924 in cash donations, which provided over 1,950 meals to individuals and families served by their local food bank.

Auctions & Holiday Events: Windermere offices throughout the Western U.S. partnered with local service organizations to adopt children and families for holiday gift-giving. In December, over 200 brokers from six Windermere Real Estate/East, Inc. offices participated in the Target for Kids event, helping bring the holidays to 100 children and their families. This was their fourteenth year participating in the event, which in total has donated almost a quarter-of-a-million dollars through the Windermere Foundation.

No Child Sleeps Outside: Through the Windermere Foundation, Seattle-area Windermere offices came together to donate $35,000 to Mary’s Places “No Child Sleeps Outside” campaign in December. Donations were immediately used to open a crisis-response night shelter to provide homeless families with a warm place to sleep during the winter months.

Thank you to our agents and everyone who supports the Windermere Foundation. Your generosity is truly making a difference in the lives of many families in our local communities.

DSC_0855_editedThe brokers and clients at Windermere Mercer Island worked hard collecting shoes in August for Kicks For Kids. We were so ecstatic at the response from the community of Mercer Island. In addition, our office partnered with our Foundation Grant recipient organization, Mercer Island Youth And Family Services (MIYFS), throughout 2014. During our annual recycling event, all cash donations received benefited MIYFS. DSC_0003 At the holidays, our office adopted 2 local families that included 5 children through MIYFS’ adopt-a-family program.

The main monetary support for Windermere Foundation comes from the portion of each Windermere transaction commission that’s donated to the non-profit. Those monies are then combined with individual contributions from Windermere agents, plus donations from Windermere employees and community members, to be used by Windermere Foundation to support non-profit agencies dedicated to helping homeless and low-income families. The Foundation has raised almost $29 million since being established in 1989— thank you so much for all of your support to reach this incredible milestone! In addition, Windermere Foundation set a goal to reach $30 million by the end of 2015. If you would like to make a donation to Windermere Foundation during 2015, to help us reach the $30 million mark, please click here.
MIYFS adopt-a-family thank you_2MIYFS adopt-a-family thank you_1

MIYFS Adopt A Family 2014: Thank You For Your Generosity

MIYFS Holiday Giving_2014Thank you so much for your assistance again this year, helping Windermere Mercer Island make the holidays brighter for local families. Our office participated in the 2014 Mercer Island Youth and Family Services (MIYFS) Adopt A Family program and we are blown away by your generosity!! MIYFS is our Windermere Foundation partner we work with throughout the year.

A few fun facts, courtesy of our Windermere Foundation Representative Kathryn Lerner who organized our participation in the Adopt A Family program:

  • We adopted two families, including five kids.
  • 15 gifts (3 for each child)
  • $600 worth of grocery cards
  • gifts included 2 bikes, doll house, board games, legos, books and more….

Have a wonderful holiday season,
The Brokers And Staff of Windermere Mercer Island

Community Service Day 2014: Friday June 20th at Mercerdale Park, 9am to 12pm

Every year since 1984, the brokers and employees of Windermere offices have taken a day to give back to their communities at large. Community Service Day, held each June in the Northwest Region, is an event we all really look forward to. Windermere offices located in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Alaska, Hawaii, and Utah will close their doors tomorrow, June 20th, and head out to complete a project to benefit our local communities. Over at the Windermere Blog, check out all the projects planned throughout Windermere’s Northwest Region. Projects include cleaning, landscaping, and painting at local senior citizens centers, facilities for homeless children and adults, public parks and schools, low income housing, and emergency shelters. In addition, there are offices running food drives, assembling filled backpacks for low income students, and assembling resource kits for homeless youth.

Mercerdale Sign_editedHere at Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island, most of our projects have centered on keeping Mercer Island’s parks and green spaces clean and maintained. Click here to see a list of our past Community Service Day projects. Tomorrow, we’ll head over to Mercerdale Park around 8:30 am to set up for work in the park between 9am and noon.

We would love to have you stop by and see us. Just follow our brokers’ open house signs at Mercerdale Park, which will indicate the sectors we are working in. DSC_0135 Also, Windermere is hosting a photo contest. Each office that posts a Community Service Day photo on the company Facebook page will receive $100 for their Windermere Foundation accounts AND be in the running for the $1000 grand prize, to be donated to the Windermere Foundation charity of the winner’s choice. If you use Facebook, would you please consider liking the Windermere Mercer Island photo that will be placed on the Windermere Company Facebook Page ( on the afternoon of Friday, June 20th?

I love the take broker Tom Poole, of Windermere Mercer Island, has on Community Service Day:

Community service day is like the Peace Corps, well, the mini version anyway:)

As a former Peace Corps member, Tom’s view of Community Service is really special. All the brokers at Windermere Mercer Island look forward to seeing you, their friends and neighbors, over at Mercerdale Park!