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When Good Things Happen Thanks To Good People

Sarasota is that most uncommon of American markets that combines a fully-realized, leisure-centric lifestyle with the daily rhythms of a small-scale, progressive metropolis. Truly it’s a rare jewel with many facets, one of the most beautiful being its enormous philanthropic heart.

Each year, through numerous public charities and not-for-profit organizations—2,228 to be exact, throughout Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte Counties—the Southwest Florida community marshals thousands of volunteers and millions upon millions in donations to assist worthy causes, especially for the less fortunate among us. The region literally bustles all year long with activities that engage the community to pitch in wherever help is needed. No matter where your heart lies philanthropically, there’s certain to be an organization waiting to benefit from your time, talents and commitment. “Everyone can be great because anyone can serve,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said. “You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace and a soul generated by love.”

Volunteering has a number of lesser-known fringe benefits beyond those accrued by the people whose lives are touched by a volunteer’s commitment. Reams of scientific documentation ascribe incredible health benefits to those who make the time to volunteer regularly. Such outer-directed activities improve self-esteem, reduce heart rate and blood pressure and increase endorphin production—while boosting the immune system, buffering the impact of daily stressors and prohibiting social isolation. Moreover, people with solid social support networks achieved through volunteer activities exhibit lower premature death rates, a lower incident of heart disease, fewer health risk factors overall, and a general increase in life expectancy.

If you are new to the community, a seasonal resident or simply wish to broaden your local horizons, volunteering expands your social networking opportunities by exposing you to like-minded people you might not otherwise meet. Through their chosen affiliations, volunteers build lifelong friendships, absorb new job and people skills and set important examples for their children and others. As well, employers are more likely to hire job applicants who display a history of commitment toward helping others. Whatever your reason for giving of yourself as a volunteer, it’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.

At Michael Saunders & Company we are proud to join in the spirit of giving back to a community that has given us so much to enjoy and be thankful for. This is evidenced every day in so many ways as our associates, staff and management donate their time, money and talents to benefit those in need of assistance—thus improving the quality of life for all of us.

Though best known for the exceptional real estate experiences they bring to every customer, one of the many things that make the people of this company so special is their deep and abiding sense of community. Today we dedicate this page to members of our own corporate family, as well as committed volunteers throughout the region, who continually give their all to make sure that “paradise” is as good as it can possibly be.

Pictured here is just a sampling of the associates at Michael Saunders & Company who distinguish themselves daily in service to such noteworthy organizations as the All-Star Children’s Foundation, Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and Manatee Counties, Child Protection Center, The Community Foundation of Sarasota County, The Downtown Partnership, Girls Inc., Goodwill Industries, Habitat for Humanity, Marie Selby Gardens Botanical Gardens, Sarasota Museum of Art, The Selby Foundation, Senior Friendship Center and The Wellness Community, just to name a few.

As much as any one person can do to improve the human condition is magnified many times over when more good people like these heed the call to help others. As the saying goes: Snowflakes melt alone, but when joined together can be traffic stoppers.

  • User Gravatar Javier
    March 28th, 2008

    I live in the Baja California peninsula and I have seen the willingness of the people to help their community in lots of ways. But what it takes to fuel this goodness of heart is someone who can start things and actually make them come true: good leadership. And I truly believe good leadership was followed through in this scenario. Truly, remarkable.

  • User Gravatar Baja Real Estate
    May 25th, 2009

    I have to agree with Javier. It comes down to leadership. Great article.

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