March for Babies Apr23

March for Babies

Yardi Atlanta recently reached and exceeded its fundraising goal for the March of Dimes walk. The office planned to raise $500 yet ended the day with $682! The fundraiser was a terrific way to boost morale and raise awareness for the upcoming March of Dimes March for Babies on April 28, 2018. The Organization March of Dimes understands that no one anticipates a baby born prematurely or very sick. Yet for hundreds of thousands of parents in the United States, that is the frightening reality. Each year, more than half a million babies are born premature or with birth defects. March of Dimes supports the efforts of parents and newborn intensive care unit (NICU) staff to save the lives of babies. Without the Affordable Care Act and March of Dimes support, most families would not be able to afford NICU services. Yet care doesn’t start in the NICU. March of Dimes also funds vital services for mothers. With early care, mothers and specialists can identify and minimize risks of preterm birth and birth defects. Yardi Atlanta + March of Dimes Last year, the Atlanta office supported March of Dimes for the first time as a group. Several families that had experienced premature childbirth, as well as those who have been affected, rallied together. Support for the cause grew into an office-wide effort this year. Stacy Harmon, Senior Quality Assurance Specialist Programming at Yardi, will be participating in the walk. “My son RJ (pictured at right and left) was six weeks premature,” says Harmon. “As scared as we were, we really had no need to worry. He was well taken care of while in the NICU for the 10 days after he was born. He was tested, fed, changed and even dressed while they watched...

Miles for Moms 5K Apr09

Miles for Moms 5K

Yardi is the presenting sponsor of the upcoming Miles for Moms 5K, a fun run and walk on Mother’s Day weekend that will benefit Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital. The run will take place on Saturday, May 12, the day before Mother’s Day. Participants are encouraged to walk with or in honor of mothers by Cottage Hospital organizers. “We are very excited about kicking off our very first Miles for Moms event,” said Arie Dejong, Vice President of Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital and Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital. “We hope runners and walkers will come out to join us in honoring moms, as well as helping to support the hospital’s fundraising efforts.” The route of the 5K will be familiar to many lunchtime joggers at Yardi’s corporate headquarters. Beginning at the Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital parking lot at 351 S. Patterson Ave., the 5K route will travel south on Patterson and onto the Atascadero Creek Trail (Obern Trail). The route will turn back at Highway 217 and return to the hospital. A fun run for kids will also be part of the morning events, and registration is free for kids under 12. Prizes will be awarded to the top fundraiser, as well as first place prizes to female and male runners. All moms participating in the event will receive a special gift and various raffle prizes will be given away. A DJ will play music for the entire duration of the event. To register, visit eventbrite.com/e/miles-for-moms-5k-goleta-valley-cottage-hospital-foundation-tickets-41508752797 Event Day Timeline: 7:30 am: On-site registration & packet pick up at Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital parking lot 9:00 am: Walk/run starts (participants arrive at start line by 8:45 am) 12:00 pm: Event ends at Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital parking lot For more information about Miles for Moms, visit cottagehealth.org/milesformoms. Explore more about how Yardi is Energized...

Emergency Backpacks

Two weeks ago, staff members from the Yardi corporate marketing and human resources departments in Santa Barbara, Calif. spent a few hours helping local non-profit organization Direct Relief assemble Emergency Medical Backpacks for first responders in disaster zones. For the marketing department the project was a peer energy team effort. Marketing colleagues assemble in small groups for regular activities like team building, socializing, friendly competitions and volunteer outings. The backpack packing effort required the coworkers to travel just a few blocks to the non-profit’s current warehouse, where backpacks and supplies were ready for assembly. (Direct Relief is currently building a new headquarters and warehouse space less than a mile from the Yardi corporate office in Goleta.) “After having a very difficult few months in our community with wildfires and the tragic debris flow, this opportunity to work together with our teams putting together medical backpacks for first responders was extremely uplifting. It felt really good that we could join together and do something that will help save lives, perhaps during another disaster like we had just experienced,” said Lexi Beausoleil, marketing campaign specialist for multifamily. Emergency Medical Backpacks include diagnostic items like a stethoscope and thermometers, infection control supplies like masks and gloves, personal protection tools like a headlamp and safety goggles, and trauma care supplies like bandages and iodine. “These Emergency Medical Backpacks are highly functional and durable, with appropriate and sufficient contents to meet critical disaster-related health needs, as well as the personal protective needs of skilled health workers providing treatment,” a Direct Relief spokesperson explained. Input from experienced emergency responders and field physicians informs the supply list. They are designed to grab-and-go for medical response volunteers or local responders able to provide on-site medical care and support during unexpected disasters or...

Marguerite’s Place Apr05

Marguerite’s Place

Marguerite’s Place takes a holistic approach to ending homelessness. The organization offers transitional housing, onsite childcare, as well as supportive services to break the cycle of homelessness and dependence for women and children. The nonprofit is nondenominational and service focused, with an emphasis on helping women and children who are facing housing insecurity. Over the years, Marguerite’s Place has grown into ten secure, affordable housing units that are fully furnished for families. In addition to transitional housing, services include educational assistance, career development training, referrals, and case management. Staff can also connect residents with legal counsel, mental health counseling, financial guidance, and peer mentoring. The ancillary services at Marguerite’s Place are what attracted Christa Tsechrintzis to the nonprofit. She’s currently the Director of Development. “I admired the guidance and intensive services that are provided to the residents to help them gain the confidence they need for self-sufficiency,” she says. While those services edify mothers, it’s the on-site childcare that often receives the greatest applause. “What sets us apart from other transitional living programs is our on-site childcare center,” says Tsechrintzis. “Our center is a Licensed Plus program as well as a designated ‘Strengthening Families’ center which means the care is centered around the wellness of the family as a whole.” Women can step from homelessness towards expanding their educations and advancing their careers without worrying about childcare expenses during the transition. That one component makes advancement more accessible for women. Once women have graduated from the transitional housing at Marguerite’s Place, they are eligible for MP Housing, a sister program with 10 condominiums. “MP Housing is a next step for our residents that have graduated through our program. They may stay in these condos for up to fives years and pay a rent that is...

Doves for Youth

Yardi Oxnard teamed up with Casa Pacifica Centers for Children and Families to bring hope to local, at-risk youth. About the Non-Profit Casa Pacifica helps children overcome a broad spectrum of difficult circumstances, from abuse and neglect to complex emotional, behavioral, and family issues. Services are offered to more than 4,000 children from Ventura County, Santa Barbara County, Kern County, San Luis Obispo County and surrounding regions. The non-profit organization is located on a rural 24-acre campus, providing a serene getaway for recovery from severe emotional, social, behavioral, and mental health challenges. Over 90 percent of the children served by the nonprofit also have alcohol and drug issue that contributed to their placement in Casa Pacifica. Casa Pacifica youth programs include but are not limited to: Short Term Adolescent Treatment and Therapy – for anxiety disorders, trauma and PTSD, Illicit substance use, self-harm behaviors, co-occurring disorders, depressive and bi-polar disorders. Foster Care – placement for more than 1,500 children in need throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. The organization provides the required 52-hour training program for parents as well as 24/7 emergency support. Casa Pacifica’s Non-Public Special Education School – a WASC accredited, diploma-granting institution for youth in grades 1 – 12 who are dealing with mental health and developmental issues. Transitional Youth Services – for young adults transitioning from Casa Pacifica services into adulthood. These vital services help young adults continue to prepare for the responsibilities of adulthood—including housing and employment assistance–beyond the care and guidance received through Casa Pacifica. Yardi + Casa Pacifica Yardi Oxnard has established a relationship with Casa Pacifica through the company’s local non-profit grant committee. “We asked for 3-5 volunteers to be a part of the non-profit committee. Employees submitted up to two non-profit organizations they would like to...

Yardi ATL Prom Drive

Yardi Atlanta recently celebrated the most successful Yardi Prom Drive, supporting Foster Care Support Foundation (FCSF) in nearby Roswell, GA. About Foster Care Support Foundation Each year, approximately 8,000 children in Georgia are in need of foster care. Placement in a good home is only part of the battle. Many foster parents and relatives struggle to provide enrichment materials and experiences for the children in their care. For 17 years, FCSF had provided free clothing, infant care equipment, and developmental learning tools to thousands of foster and relative care families. The organization accepts gently used materials to offset its annual operational costs of $700,000. To date, the organization has served more than 50,000 children through its services. Yardi Atlanta + FCSF Yardi formed a relationship with FCSF through the local grant committee. Committee members Shana Winbush and Marilyn Duffield proposed the idea of supporting foster families. The timeliness of FCSF Prom Drive was a perfect fit. Yardi hosted this year’s Prom Drive Boutique in honor of FCSF. Committee member Keiya Huguley helped to coordinate the event. “Many foster families don’t have $200-$500 to pay for the tux, suit, dress, shoes, accessories, make-up, hair, nails, and everything that goes into attending a prom. Prom Drives give foster children a better chance of living a life close as possible to ‘normal,’ despite circumstances. These types of drives are helping families financially and impacting them emotionally,” observes Huguley. To raise awareness for the clothing drive, the committee started a prom photo contest that selected daily winners for a week. Employees submitted their prom photos to enter the daily drawing. Daily winners received entry into the final drawing where they were eligible to become Yardi Prom King and Queen. But before announcing the winners, the team created a...

Supporting Women + Girls Mar08

Supporting Women + Girls

Every year, Yardi’s international offices select hundreds of nonprofits to receive grant sponsorships. Several of the grant recipients focus their services on women’s advancement. The World Bank reports that investing in women is a key factor in ending poverty and boosting economic growth. PLOS One research also indicates that investments towards women’s health contribute to positive societal development. In honor of International Women’s Day, we would like to highlight a few Yardi grant recipients that emphasize women’s well-being. Girls Inc. inspires “all girls to be smart, strong, and bold.” The organization partners with schools to help girls learn to value themselves, take risks, discover and develop their inherent strengths. Nearly 90 percent of expenses are directed towards programming. S.A.F.E. House provides recovery programs, life skills resources, and housing for human trafficking survivors. The program has a nationwide presence, yet each house operates as a discrete, independent entity to provide safety and anonymity for clients. Yardi Vasti Vikas Prakalp is a collaboration between Yardi and nearly 20 local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in Pune, India. The NGOs offer public programming for hygiene, education, and entrepreneurship as well as construction projects like public restrooms and composting systems. Recent initiatives include a footwear drive to prevent illnesses in women in children. Domestic Violence Solutions commits to ending violence against women. The organization operates Santa Barbara county’s only 24-hour shelter service and transitional housing program for domestic violence survivors. Eva’s Initiatives aims to end teen housing instability in Toronto. Nearly 70 percent of homeless youth in the city identify abuse as the catalyst for leaving home. The nonprofit offers mental and physical health recovery programs, housing and education assistance to displaced youth. Walk with Heart, a program of the American Heart Association, fundraises for heart health awareness. There are more than 250 walks nationwide that have supported life-saving services for 670,000 women. Casa Serena provides a safe and peaceful place for women to recover from drug and alcohol addiction. The program includes 90 days of recovery in The Main House. Participants can then transition to two other assisted housing communities to rebuild their relationships with their children, finish their education, and advanced their careers. Big Brothers Big Sisters – Mentorship effort for kids in need that creates inspiring and supportive one-to-one relationships that change lives. Boys & Girls Clubs – Fostering academic performance, extracurricular activities, nutrition and more, the Boys & Girls Clubs were founded by three women in 1860. Days for Girls – A program that provides access to menstrual care and education by developing global partnerships, cultivating social enterprises, mobilizing volunteers, and innovating sustainable solutions that shatter stigmas and limitations for women and girls. Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center – Empowers people through healing and social change to eliminate all forms of sexual violence. The Center is committed to transforming lives by providing services and education to rape victims. SEE International – Provides sustainable medical, surgical, and educational services through volunteer ophthalmic surgeons with the objectives of restoring sight and preventing blindness worldwide. Tour de Pink – This charity bike ride raises money for Young Survival Coalition, the nation’s foremost nonprofit dedicated to providing information, resources and support to young women affected by breast cancer. Women’s & Children’s Alliance – A Boise, Idaho non-profit that supports victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault. Women’s Economic Ventures – This Central Coast entrepreneurship program encourages women and men to realize dreams, achieve financial independence and succeed. Yardi is Energized for Good! Join us in supporting women through these powerful...

Giving by Gaming Feb06

Giving by Gaming

Yardi Saskatoon participated in the Extra Life game day, a playtime marathon to support Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital was the local beneficiary of the event. Extra Life  started back in 2008 with a handful of passionate gamers. Since then, the community has grown to more than 100,000 participants. To date, Extra Life has raised more than $40 million for children facing illness and major injuries. The Concept Ideally, Extra Life is a gaming marathon that lasts for 24 consecutive hours. While there is an official Game Day (often early November) gamers are able to contribute whenever their schedules allow. They’re also encouraged to take breaks and spread out the 24 hours as needed. Gamers can choose from a variety of game styles, from PS4 to card games and even hop scotch. It’s an entirely flexible fundraising platform that allows players to customize the experience based on the interests and expertise of those involved. Fundraising milestone are also customizable. Coordinators recommend a minimum of $100, but players are encouraged to select an amount that is personal. For example, Extra Life founder Jeromy Adams set his 2011 goal at $5,415. That odd number represents $5 for each day that his friend Tori spent fighting leukemia before she succumbed to the illness. Passionate participants begin by receiving achievement badges, milestones in raising awareness and rallying support. For every year of participation, gamers receive Legacy Badges that distinguish them from newbies in the field. Power Ups are the participants’ ultimate in-game reward! Each year, coordinators collaborate with partners to offer “gaming goodies.” These can range from discounts to expansion packs and merchandise. Platinum players receive Extra Life memorabilia such as t-shirts, medals, and exclusive prizes. The Event The event was held on-site on the...

Yardi Honored Feb05

Yardi Honored

PathPoint has awarded Yardi a Community Partnership Award in recognition of the company’s 10 years of support for PathPoint’s programs for adults with disabilities in Santa Barbara. “Yardi’s generous grants over the past decade have enabled us to bring the latest assistive technology and resources to individuals with disabilities—helping them communicate with their families, access Internet resources, and engage with the world,” said Harry Bruell, PathPoint’s president and CEO.  “The difference this has made for these individuals and their families is life-changing.” PathPoint is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing services to people with disabilities or disadvantages in order to reach their fullest potential. PathPoint provides employment, community access, independent living, and behavioral health services in five Central Coast and Southern California counties: Kern, Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura. “We have a long history of giving back to communities all over the world,” said Gordon Morrell, Yardi’s executive vice president. “We’re honored to partner with PathPoint to help improve the lives of our fellow community members.” At the awards ceremony in December, PathPoint presented Yardi with an original abstract painting by Elizabeth Blasenstein, a participant in PathPoint’s Community Integration Program. The integration program is one of the many ways PathPoint supports adults with disabilities with stimulating activities, social interaction, and vocational training. Yardi grants have also supported staff training, adaptive art supplies, sensory stimulation equipment, and facility maintenance and upkeep; all vital parts of nurturing a path to integration for individuals with disabilities into our community. To learn more about how Yardi is Energized for Good, visit our Giving page:...

Giving, United

At Yardi, community outreach is built into the fibers of daily operations. Yardi corporate empowers local offices to award grants to nonprofits within their communities. Each office receives a sum that can be shared between local charitable organizations. The Process In Scottsdale, the Yardi office organized a committee composed of volunteer employees. Each participant nominated up to two nonprofits. The nominations were accompanied by a presentation on the nonprofit including its mission and community impact. With presentations complete, the committee then voted to select six nonprofits that fit the criteria of Yardi corporate. The Recipients The following nonprofits received the committee’s final approval. Committee members hosted a small ceremony in which representatives from each organization could visit the office, speak on behalf of their nonprofit, receive the donation and share how the contribution would be used to uplift the community. Comfort Food Pantry is an affiliate of Feeding America, a program dedicated to delivering food and necessities to families in the East Valley. The organization offers non-judgmental assistance to those in need in an effort to strengthen the community. American Foundation for Suicide Prevention raises awareness and provides resources and aid to those affected by suicide. The organization funds research to improve interventions, educate clinicians in suicide prevention, and advocate for policy that will save lives. Save the Family helps families overcome homelessness through housing assistance, education and employment opportunities, caseworker support, and other life-enhancement programs Tempe Community Action Agency provides education, stability, and advocacy to working poor families, seniors and the homeless. The organization’s outreach programs benefit 43,000 people. Days for Girls: Love Girls, Period serves more than 1 million women and girls worldwide. The nonprofit provides washable menstrual hygiene solutions, health education, and social enterprises to females in need. Homeward Bound creates pathways out...

Employee Spotlight

Jeff Arthur has a heart for empowering others by sharing knowledge. As a Associate Technical Account Manager for Yardi’s Affordable Housing team, he says his favorite part of the job is helping clients better understand their software so that they receive its full benefits and value. The spirit of empowerment is reflected in Arthur’s personal life as well. Before joining Yardi, he taught at Santa Barbara City College. When he decided to pursue other career interests, he wanted to stay involved with local youth. He received an invitation to serve as an educator with Youth Interactive, a place where teens are employed to explore their creative and entrepreneurial talent. “I was introduced to Youth Interactive during my MBA,” says Arthur. “A friend of mine who works with Youth Interactive reached out to me and wanted to know if I was interested working with young men at local boys camp for trouble youth. This was an exciting opportunity that I could not turn down.” Youth Interactive empowers young adults by creating youth-led businesses. Each business provides participants with professional experience, life skills, and the tools needed for self-sufficiency. Students lead five businesses: Pier Pressure Designs, creators of handbags upcycled from yacht sails and donated fabrics Creative Studio, a student-managed art gallery that highlights local youth Montecito Biscotti, a local favorite specializing in baked goods. Proceeds contribute to local scholarship funds Havok, a clothing company specializing in graphic Ts and product distribution. Proceeds create scholarships for students Resurrected by Youth, with an emphasis on carpentry and business marketing. To hone their personal skills, Youth Interactive students participate in several camps, classes, workshops and projects through Congregation B’nai B’rith (CBB). CBB connects students with educators and change agents to fill the gaps in their academic and personal...

Positive Change Dec12

Positive Change

What if you could help to end family homelessness? Not just through a single meal or a temporary residence but through a life-changing and habit-altering program for determined adults? Yardi employees in San Diego were able to do just that by volunteering with Solutions for Change. Vista, California is home to Solutions for Change, one of the nation’s only full service programs to end homelessness. To date, the organization has empowered 850 families in the San Diego area including 2,200 children. Solutions University is the key to the program’s long-term success. The university integrates affordable housing, job training, education, and wellness services. Participants work, pay rent, and attend educational classes that reinforce self-sufficiency. In about 1,000 days, participants can complete the program and emerge ready to end homelessness in their families for good. It is an empowering and effective program that has changed lives since 1999. Yardi participated in a home preparation project for Solutions University graduates. Before the official on-site project, Yardi San Diego team members prepared by collecting donations of much needed items. Cleaning supplies composed most of the donations as well as gift cards for additional home supplies. Team members also donated gift cards for the residents that would allow them to better equip their new apartments. For the on-site event, Yardi employees Melissa Krautwald, Larry Galang, Karen Detmar, Kathy Bretado, Tyler Dalsted, Louie Arzaga, Melissa Krautwald, Jeremy Hoover and Dave Chmelka volunteered. The team helped to “turn units” in preparation for two Solutions University families. Volunteers scrubbed bathrooms, mopped floors, and cleaned windows, walls, doors and door jams. Solutions for Change provided new dishware that the volunteers cleaned and stored. The units went from drab to fab in about three hours. “It was powerful to see some of the families that...

Supporting Families

When Yardi employee Isabella Mitchell read our original story on Yardi Vasti Vikas Prakalp (YVVP), she pondered ways to get involved with health and sanitation efforts in impoverished in Pune, India. Months later, she and her daughter received the opportunity of a lifetime. Isabella’s daughter, Angelina Mitchell, is a registered EMT and pre-med major at Binghamton University.  Angelina wanted to volunteer abroad and felt called to support Vasti Vikas Prakalp as well. When her mother received a work assignment in Pune, Angelina asked to join her on the trip. While Isabella worked, Bharati Kotwal, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at Yardi in Pune, helped Angelina find ways to get involved. The college student toured several clinics and hospitals with doctors via YVVP. The doctors serve at special sites that offer care free of charge. Angelina focused on programs that assist women and children. “Dr. Genesh showed me one of the mobile clinics that bring the services to the women and children who are not able to travel. These clinics have a doctor on staff that does free check ups and provides the women of Pune with the appropriate contraceptives. This clinic sees about 50 patients a day, 21 days out of every month,” said Angelina. At District Hospital, Dr. Ashwin leads a unique two-week program to prevent and treat malnourishment. Mothers are educated on proper nutrition for their children. Their malnourished children are simultaneously treated with a soft mixture of natural foods to restore health. The mothers receive a small stipend to offset their time in the program away from their families and work. Poor nutrition and early, frequent motherhood contributes to low iron level in local young women. Angelina learned that a lack of footwear exacerbates malnutrition and anemia. Hookworm infects already vulnerable...

Walk for Hope 2017 Nov01

Walk for Hope 2017

The 29th Annual Thad & Alice Eure Walk for Hope united people from different paths for life for a single goal: discovering the causes of, and potential cures for, mental illness. More than 3,000 walkers participated this year including eleven Yardi team members. Greg Smith, Vice President, Client Services and Raleigh’s General Manager, shared why he has participated in the event for multiple years. “In 2011 our office was rocked by the suicide of one of our most fun and energetic team members, Tim Owens.  Tim’s death put a spotlight on depression and mental health for me. In the days and weeks after, our team members came together to support each other and share.” Mental illness affects as many as 1 in 5 American adults. It wasn’t until the death of Owens that Smith realized the scope of mental illnesses in the United States. “It’s not just depression,” Smith reflected. “There’s PTSD, postpartum depression, eating disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety – the list goes on and on. But unlike when someone has cancer or arthritis, there’s a stigma associated with mental health. People are embarrassed, even though these are real health problems that can be diagnosed and in many cases treated.  The result of that stigma is that people don’t get help.” “The Walk not only raises money for medical research, but it also raises awareness and gets conversations going,” said Smith. All of the funds raised by participants directly benefits local mental health research at the UNC-Chapel Hill Department of Psychiatry. To date, the organization has donated $5 million to 128 research grants. The grants leveraged an additional $145 million from the National Institute of Health. The nonprofit has also donated more than $320,000 to 36 local community service grants. Yardi team members that participated in the event included...

Feeding SB County

Members of the Yardi Marketing team gathered for a two-day conference in sunny Santa Barbara. As the conference drew to a close, the team celebrated with a volunteer service event at The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County (Foodbank SBC). Foodbank SBC is moving the community from hunger to health. The organization is “not only feeding but teaching how to fish.” Leslie Velez, Development Coordinator, explained, “Our motto means that the Foodbank helps clients move beyond a state of food insecurity through education and resources. With many of our programs, food distribution is offered alongside nutrition education, cooking instruction, exercise classes, and connection to support services like CalFresh and blood sugar testing. We want clients to have the tools they need to live healthy lives.” Foodbank SBC first works to ensure that clients have access to enough healthy food to feed a family. Of 10 million pounds of food distributed each year, half is fresh produce donated by groceries and local farms and gleaned from people’s homes. To continue the fishing metaphor, the organization has also created “the net,” a network of partners. Members include gardeners, many of who are Master Gardeners, who teach gardening classes year-round. Budgeting classes are led by a partner nonprofit to help people shop smart for food. The Foodbank also issues “fishing” tools, programs for growing food, preparing food, and using food in a way that improves food security. The Feed the Future initiative encompasses six educational programs geared towards youth and teens. Food Literacy in Preschool and Healthy School Pantry collaborate with local schools to promote access to fresh produce and provide an enhanced understanding of nutritional intake. Healthy School Pantry serves more than 8,000 clients. Kids Farmers Market gives kids an interactive experience with growing fruits and vegetables, selecting...

Pitching In

Nearly three dozen Yardi Atlanta team members and their loved ones recently volunteered for the Mimosa Elementary School Courtyard Cleanup. Their efforts transformed a neglected square into a welcoming space for students and faculty. A growing body of research confirms the importance of green space in communities. They foster physical and mental health, bolster energy, and even reduce crime rates. The myriad of benefits associated with green spaces highlights the significance of the elementary school courtyard. Winding walkways, a spacious deck, and raised garden beds made the courtyard a beautiful place for learning. School counselor Flynn Pustilnik explained, “Teachers can facilitate their reading or writing time outdoors and incorporate science curriculum into that time. Some teachers have incorporated project-based learning with our outdoor space and made habitats for the turtles out there. As the counselor, I like to use the outdoor space to eat lunch with students.” In recent years, however, weeds filled the garden beds and shrubs peaked near the gutters. In Georgia, school budgets do not include funds for landscaping other than grass mowing. A gardening club invested personal funds and time to maintain the space for years but the club eventually dissolved. The courtyard became a less inviting place. The two turtles—one of which is more than 14 years old—were the only ones who liked to linger in the courtyard. It was time for an overhaul. Yardi Atlanta stepped up to help the local school. The courtyard cleanup is one of many outreach collaborations between Yardi and Mimosa Elementary School, including a recent school supply drive. The morning of the event, rain drizzled as the volunteers arrived to the parking lot, unloading the gardening tools and cleaning supplies that they brought from home. Other volunteers arrived with supplies from Home Depot, purchased with gift...

Storyteller SB Sep12

Storyteller SB

Since 1988, Storyteller Children’s Center has helped Santa Barbara’s homeless and at-risk toddlers achieve kindergarten readiness. Therapeutic preschool and support services provide students will the skills needed to beat the odds and excel. Since our previous article, Storyteller has grown. The second location and its staff are thriving. Even with the second location, the center has a waitlist for enrollments. In 2014, the waitlist averaged 80 families. This year, the waitlist has 144 families. The demand for Storyteller services continues to rise as local families struggle with homelessness, food security, and access to fundamental necessities. More than 90 percent of families serviced live below the 2017 Federal Poverty Guideline of $24,600 for a family of four. Delene Bliss, Director of Development at Storyteller, understands the conditions in which many students live. “That’s not a livable wage,” Bliss said. “That’s just the federal poverty guideline but that wage makes living very, very difficult in Santa Barbara.” About 56 percent of Storyteller families are single income, single parent households. Shelters or crowded, shared residences are what 53 percent of students call home. In addition to precarious living conditions, 43 percent of children strive to learn while managing developmental delays or disabilities. Without the help of Storyteller, these children would risk falling farther behind than their peers. The small classroom settings and one-on-one attention that students receive at Storyteller increase students’ chances for success. Yet in spite of the odds, Storyteller students are flourishing. Storyteller collaborated with the University of California, Channel Island and the University of California, Santa Barbara to conduct a study of Storyteller graduates. Dr. Michael Furlong of the University of California, Santa Barbara’s Counseling Clinical and School Psychology program led a team of researchers on a quest to determine the long-term effects of...

ATL March of Dimes

Atlanta summers are known for their sweltering heat and ruthless humidity. Those conditions were no match for Yardi Atlanta. The team of eight braved the heat to show their support for babies during the March of Dimes March for Babies. Supported by donations from fellow team members, their efforts helped to give hope and support to babies and their families. March of Dimes was born as the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, a response to President Franklin Roosevelt’s personal struggle with polio and his desire to see the disease eradicated. The organization fought and achieved its mission to end polio in the United States before turning its attention to broader services. The nonprofit now supports March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center in its fight for healthy babies. The center leads in groundbreaking research on the genetic causes of birth defects, screening methods, as well as pregnancy education for medical professionals and the general public. March of Dimes and the Prematurity Research Center have experienced major breakthroughs. The teams created and improved surfactant therapy to treat respiratory distress. The new Folic Acid Campaign successfully reduces incidences of neural tube defects and birth defects of the brain and spine. The organizations also founded a system of regional neonatal intensive care centers for premature and sick babies. To continue the good work, March of Dimes relies on March for Babies as its primary fundraiser. There are thousands of marches across the United States each year, each one uniting teams of family members, coworkers, and friends on a journey towards a future for healthy babies. Yardi Atlanta team members Heather Humrich, Monique Benson, Ken Romero, Kami Reid, Wendy Caffrey, Shana Winbush, Charity Williams, and Elizabeth Daniels participated in the march. They represented Yardi on the walk of the...

Back to School

Back-to-school season can be a stressful time. New schedules, new responsibilities, and seemingly endless errands can be overwhelming for families. For some, obtaining school supplies is a major stressor. Yardi Atlanta made back-to-school preparations a bit brighter for several local families. Yardi Atlanta adopted Mimosa Elementary School, a Title 1 school with about 800 students. The school lies within an Economic Opportunity Zone, an area where many families have lower incomes. Nearly 95 percent of students at the school qualify for free or reduced lunch rates, meaning that their parents’ income falls below the poverty line. The Atlanta team leads several projects to assist the school and its hardworking families. Heather Humrich, Administrative Assistant, G&A, works closely with school counselor Flynn Pustilnik. Together, they find ways to get essential resources to the kids who need them most. “I love being a school counselor,” says Pustilnik. “I enjoy helping students resolve problems that may arise and overcome barriers to learning so that they can achieve academic success.” In early August, the Atlanta team completed a School Supply Drive. Yardi employees purchased brand new school supplies and left their donations in decorative boxes throughout the office. Some employees bought paper, pencils, markers, backpacks, and similar supplies for the elementary school students. Their donations filled three large boxes. Other employees donated money for the purchase of school materials, totaling $147. Those funds contributed to four over-stuffed backpacks full of school necessities for students. Pustilnik estimates that Yardi’s donation will serve about 100 students. “The donated goods help our students start the year school prepared and ready for learning.  They can focus more on academics knowing that their basic needs have been met and that they have the materials that they will need to be successful in the classroom,”...

Raleigh Food Bank Aug09

Raleigh Food Bank

The Corporate Training Team recently convened for its annual conference. Participants dedicated one morning of the event to volunteering at the Raleigh branch of the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina (Food Bank CENC). “For my team, since we’re spread through the U.S., we only get together once a year,” says Debbie Lamberson, Team Leader, Corporate Training at Yardi. “We spend much of that time learning but this year we wanted to do team building. Everybody wants to do it again next year! It was hard work but it was exciting to know how much what we were doing was going to help seniors.” Yardi Employees Lamberson, Jamie Hall, Jon Hodgkin, Julie Taylor, Lacey Petch, Laura Guerrero, Lina Castanon, Marcus Rutherford, Patty Evans, and Steve Harris participated in the event. Cary Middle School Future Business Leaders joined Yardi employees that morning, adding a fun dynamic to the group. The team of 25 sorted and assembled packages that would be distributed to smaller food banks in the area. With their efforts combined, the volunteers completed 484 boxes for seniors in three hours, beating the organization’s record average of 450 boxes per shift. The boxes contained about 14,360 lbs of food. “The Food Bank figures 19 ounces for an average senior meal, so we created 12,101 meals,” says Lamberson. The Raleigh branch of Food Bank CENC provides relief for the vulnerable populations of 13 counties. In this region, the United States Census Bureau reports that 27.9 percent of the local population earns an income that falls below the poverty level. Food Bank CENC estimates that more than 45,500 seniors in its region live in poverty, and thousands more struggle to survive on a fixed income. Food donation packaging is just one of the many...