All around the Region, people are finding ways to stand against COVID-19 and make a difference in their communities. McColly Real Estate serves all of Northwest Indiana and a number of agents are among those finding ways to help where they can.
Jessica Kish, an agent from McColly’s Schererville office, was among the first to step-up. She is a developmental committee member at St. Jude House, a family violence prevention center and shelter in Crown Point. With so many staying at home due to the pandemic, there is a surge in need for services such as St. Jude House. To help, Kish bought every St. Jude House resident lunch from Lincoln Carry Outs, a local sandwich shop, and delivered the meals right to the shelter door.
“I’ve always said that the more good you put into the world, the better the world becomes,” Kish said. “You don’t do this to get anything back from it, other than the feeling that you might have made someone’s day a little bit better.”
Kish is also planning to deliver meals to Tradewinds, who provide services for children of all abilities, and adults with physical and intellectual disabilities.
“I’ve been so taken aback by the kindness that’s been happening over the last six weeks or so,” Kish said. “I’m only one person, and I don’t have any special skill to help directly, but if I can bring joy to people with food than that’s one way for me to pay it forward.”
The Lisa Grady team also delivered meals. In her case, she took them to the nurses, doctors, and first responders at Methodist Hospitals, Porter Regional Hospital, Franciscan Health Hammond, Community Hospital, and Franciscan Health Crown Point. The Lisa Grady team also established a meal train for Crown Point First responders and contributed to the Schererville Meal train.
“These are the people who have been supporting us at McColly for so many years, and we really believe in giving back,” Grady said. “I always tell my kids that it’s important to pay it forward when you can. You never know when you’re going to be in need. I might be in a good place right now, but in a year I might not be, and I’d hope that someone would turn around and help. That’s just how we try to live.”
At the McColly Portage office, agent Alex Ridlen is putting his focus on helping local businesses. He has been visiting restaurants to create promotional videos for social media and buying gift cards that he then donates to first responders and others in the community. So far, he has stopped by Schoop’s Hamburgers and Bam Pizza Company.
“With everything being shut down, I knew that those businesses would need the community’s help to thrive or even just to keep their doors open,” Ridlen said. “I thought what better way to help them than by supporting them directly with gift cards and hopefully inspiring more people to come by with my videos.”
The acts of kindness his fellow agents and other people in the community are doing leave Ridlen proud and hopeful that things will bounce back.
“I’m not surprised at how the Region’s responded,” he said. “It seems like whenever there’s a crisis or a group of people in need, I always see people step up and take the initiative to ensure those most vulnerable have the essentials they need.”
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