SAN JOSE, Calif., Nov. 1, 2015 – The Santa Clara County REALTORS® Foundation, the charitable arm of the Santa Clara County Association of REALTORS®, raised more than $18,000 for Katherine R. Smith Elementary School at its 17th Annual Pumpkin Auction held at BJ’s Restaurant Jose on Oct. 29th.
“It was very successful,” said Dave Walsh of Alain Pinel REALTORS®, who founded the event. “We had some very generous members of SCCAOR – both REALTORS® and Affiliates – dig deep and write checks for a very worthy cause. It was our most successful auction ever.”
The majority of students who attend Katherine R. Smith Elementary are from families whose household income falls below the poverty line and whose parents did not finish high school.
As in the past, the money from the fundraiser will be used to cover field trips that the school wouldn’t otherwise be able to provide. Additionally, the funds will be put toward transportation and beautifying the campus with landscaping and murals.
“It is impossible to truly express how grateful we are for the support provided by SCCAOR,” said Aaron Brengard, Principal at Katherine R. Smith Elementary. “Our families face a lot of adversity. The additional financial support helps us improve our campus, enhance the instructional programs, and give our students field trips and other opportunities that would be financially out of reach.”
This year, a pumpkin with the word “Hope” and a yellow ribbon was created by a fifth grade class in honor of a Katherine R. Smith Elementary School student who has recently been diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma, an adolescent bone cancer. His teacher attended the auction. The pumpkin was purchased for $500 and Don Jessup of Silicon Valley Associates matched that amount, bringing the total to $1,000.
About 150 REALTORS® and Affiliates attended this year’s fundraiser. Students from Katherine R. Smith Elementary and local REALTORS® creatively decorated more than 50 pumpkins. Bloomsters, a local florist, also provided arrangements that were sold.
Mercedes Kronfeld of Alain Pinel Realtors, who attended the Pumpkin Auction for the third time, bought a double pumpkin creatively decorated as the droid of Star Wars, as well as a floral arrangement to give as a gift to give to one of her clients.
“The client was delighted,” she said. “I find it the very opportunity to buy fun and unusual client gifts while benefiting a fantastic cause. It’s a fun event every year. What was so neat this year was the generosity of the REALTORS®. People would pay $600 for a pumpkin this year. I don’t think anything went for under $100. I was practically in tears. It was just so moving seeing the outpouring of generosity from all the REALTORS® who were there.”
About the Santa Clara County Association of REALTORS®
SCCAOR, established in 1896, is California’s oldest and Northern California’s largest real estate association. We represent about 10,000 REALTORS® and affiliate members. SCCAOR exists to meet the business, professional and political needs of its members and to promote, protect homeownership and private property rights.