Corporate social responsibility has become a buzzword in recent years, but organizations like BOMA are going beyond mere lip service by rolling up their sleeves and getting involved in the communities they serve. Through its Community Service Committee, BOMA is making an impact across the country in the cities that host its annual international conference and expo—and Kansas City is no exception.
“This is our third year supporting community service projects,” said Luci Vallejo, managing director of BOMA and staff liaison for the Community Service Committee.
The purpose of the BOMA Community Service Committee is to serve the BOMA community, established to be a source of support, guidance and resource for philanthropic work being made by BOMA locals and to promote purpose and engagement. It also sets an example of the philanthropy and leadership that strengthens the association.
Supporting Veterans Facing Homelessness in Kansas City
“They not only provide housing, they also provide a community, walk-in support services and more,” Vallejo said.
Building owners, facility managers and anyone who wishes to support this worthy cause can make a donation now until June 30. All donations will go toward providing case management, new furnishings and housewares, and critical support services for our veterans.
“Trane is very excited to give back to the Veterans Community Project as part of the Community Service Committee,” said Keri Taylor, building services sales leader North America for Trane, a silver sponsor of the BOMA show. “As Chair for the last couple of years, it’s been important to us that we were able to give back to the communities that we participate in for the international conference to leave a positive mark in those places where we come together for our convention and our fellowship and camaraderie, and we wanted to extend that family feel to the local community as well."
Taylor said the initial goal for this year’s service project was actually $5,000 more than last year’s goal of $25,000.
“Through the kind donations of a lot of our vendors and allied partners, along with donations by members and the BOMA family in general, we are currently close to $50,000, which I hope to exceed,” Taylor said at the close of Day 1 of the BOMA show.
Many attendees were also on hand in the Expo Hall on Sunday, June 25, to help stuff bags with items to fill a tiny house with items veterans need to live with dignity, safety and hope.
A History of Community Support
Each year, the committee asks the local association of the host city in which BOMA’s Annual Conference will be held to recommend charitable organizations they have been involved with or have connection to, in order to partner with them in organizing an annual charitable campaign. The local association’s community benefits by having the support of BOMA International and all its members support their community and local charity. After the Committee’s careful review of the recommendations, a selection is brought forth to BOMA International’s Executive Committee that ultimately approves the group chosen with officer and staff input.
Since 2021, the Community Service Committee has financially supported deserving non-profit organizations for at-risk youth like Bridge Over Troubled Waters, the first-year recipient selected with the help of the BOMA Boston local association, and food bank The Branch of Nashville, chosen as the 2022 recipient by BOMA Nashville.
“We believe that volunteerism should be valued and enthusiastically embraced,” Vallejo said. “Ultimately, we hope to convey that community projects such as the support for the Veterans Community Project, is not just corporate social responsibility, it is part of the BOMA DNA.”