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Resolved to Get Involved? Start Here

Congratulations on your decision to volunteer! No matter how big or small a commitment you make, you’ve chosen to join many of your real estate peers in becoming a community leader, advocate and expert. You will reap many benefits not the least of which include building a greater sense of purpose and well-being, forging new friendships and increasing your community network, and learning new skills. Here are some tips and links to help you get started on the right foot.

A Few Simple Guidelines

DO find a volunteer activity you enjoy or that feels important to you, but
DON’T pick something because you think you should or because your friends are doing it.

DO approach your volunteer work with a pure heart and
DON’T go looking for the payoff – your intentions will show.

DO make the commitment and follow through but be careful and
DON’T over commit or take on more than you can handle.

DO choose organizations or projects that will allow you to use your skills and expertise.
DON’T, however, choose things that are obviously self-promoting or self-serving.

DO be passionate about the things you work on.
DON’T be overbearing, controlling or overly aggressive.

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DO use your volunteer activities to share what you know but
DON’T forget to listen and learn.

Some Volunteer Resources

Search for opportunities by zip code and keywords

Steps to take, self-evaluation tools & other tips on volunteering

Good Neighbor Toolkit
A great nuts & bolts resource for all kinds of volunteers from

I wish you all the best in your community involvement efforts in the coming months and wish you and yours a Happy, Healthy and Fulfilling New Year!

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Written By

Lisa sells residential real estate in the Pocono Mountains of Northeastern PA, and authors The Poconos Real Estate Blog. Being a strong believer in community participation, she currently serves as President of a 1700 home Property Owners' Association and Secretary of the Board of the local REALTOR Association for 2009. Her most challenging and fulfilling role, though, is that of Mom to two teenage girls, and her main hope for them is that they learn to appreciate the abundant joys of a life lived with a positive attitude. You can connect with Lisa on Twitter, Facebook and/or LinkedIn.



  1. Sarah Cooper

    December 30, 2008 at 6:30 am

    Before I went back to work I volunteered at the animal shelter, walking dogs, photographing all the animals and putting them online in the hopes of finding them homes. I miss it and keep toying with the idea of fitting it into my life again! You get back so much more than you give when you volunteer.

    (And Mitzi looks *fabulous!*)

  2. Lisa Sanderson

    December 30, 2008 at 7:03 am

    Sarah: Finding that thing that lights your fire is the secret to making volunteering rewarding. (Just like @ines said here about finding the spark for your business 🙂

    ps: Mitzi thanks you!

  3. Missy Caulk

    December 30, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    Lisa, my problem is saying NO. I tend to over commit. I did drop a few things this year to focus more on my passions.

  4. Paula Henry

    December 30, 2008 at 8:48 pm

    Lisa – Great observations and list of resources!
    I’m with Missy, I tend to overbook, then feel over obligated. I know there’s a perfect match of time for the cause – I need to find the balance.

  5. Debra Sinick

    December 30, 2008 at 10:04 pm

    Hi Lisa,

    Thanks for this post. Now more than ever, people need to volunteer. There are so many opportunities to help. There are so many people and organizations that need help now more than ever. It’s a great time to figure out how to help and balance that with what you enjoy. Volunteering is a feel good thing.

    Happy New Year and happy volunteering!

  6. Nicole Boynton

    January 5, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    Thanks for the post Lisa. In order to keep from over-extending myself I limit my volunteer work to 3 organizations. A colleague of mine gave me this advice early on she went on to explain has an old 3 tier filing/storage shelf and she has a file on each shelf for each of her nonprofit activities. When she completes her role in one she removes the file and then and only then can she take on a new one. So when she tells someone she cannot volunteer until she has some space open up she really means it…literally and figuratively! There must be an open shelf for there to be time in the schedule. This advice has helped me stay on course. My 3 nonprofit activities are: PTA, Chamber of Commerce, and our local Board of REALTORS. This gives me a great mix of industry, fellow parents, and community involvement. I agree with you…just pick something and get out there!

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