Tommy’s has taken its reputation for being community-minded to another level this year despite Covid disruptions. The Wellington-based real estate company has added two newcomers to its ever-growing list of non-profit organisations it supports.
Tommy’s marketing manager Henry Bong says new partnerships have been formed with the environmental charity Trees That Count and Life Education Trust, an organisation that educates and empowers children to make healthy choices so they can live full and healthy lives. “We want to support the awesome work Life Education does with children and we’ve donated $10,000 to them so far,” says Henry.
Wellington City Life Education Trust Chair Todrick Taylor says, “Knowing that Tommy’s is committed to partnering with us in the long term, means our fantastic Educator Rachel can take the Healthy Harold program into more schools, and teach more children, in the city.“
As for Trees That Count, Tommy’s is going even greener than its signature green colours with that partnership. For every house bought or sold, Tommy’s will fund a native tree to be planted within the Wellington region. So far more than 900 trees have been committed to community planting groups through the organisation, an initiative Henry says will mitigate Tommy’s carbon footprint and protect New Zealand’s biodiversity.
“We want to be greener than just our branding, and through Trees That Count we can leave future generations a legacy we can all be proud of.”
“We’re so excited to see Tommy’s—and their clients—get on board with backing local plantings. There are many potential positive impacts for the communities involved, including cleaner waterways and reduced erosion,” says Melanie Seyfort, Trees That Count Partnerships Manager.
Tommy’s is also proudly partnered with the new, purpose-built Wellington Children’s Hospital currently under construction. The company last year donated commission from the sale of Wellington’s old air traffic control tower, which had an asking price of $895,000, to the hospital. And earlier this year, Tommy’s handed over another $20,000 from its annual golf day fundraiser.
Those funds will go towards outfitting the interior of the new building, such as furniture and fittings, medical and education spaces, state-of-the-art medical equipment, and a therapeutic gym. Bill Day, Chair of Wellington Hospitals Foundation said, “Tommy’s support of the Foundation and our new children’s hospital is fantastic and we are proud to partner with people who are passionate about child health and about giving back to their community.”
“Many of our agents have children, and as a result, the team and staff are very passionate about giving back to organisations that benefit the youth of our society,” says Henry.
“The hospital will bring a brighter future to the thousands of sick babies, children and young people from across our region who are treated each year.”
While Tommy’s supports many organisations year-round, its major long term charitable partnership is with Wellington Free Ambulance. Tommy’s yearly $75,000 contribution helps towards the $7M Wellington Free Ambulance needs to raise from the community to keep services free of charge for the Greater Wellington and Wairarapa communities.
Tommy’s has been a long term supporter of the annual Onesie Day appeal and this year, with the move to an online campaign, staff really got behind the campaign raising over $7,000. On top of this Henry says Tommy’s also gave an additional $20,000 to close off Onesie Day and ensure funding met the target to get the very first Onesie Day ambulance, that is due next year.
“That was a special fundraising campaign by the community for the community, so when they were short, we decided to help them out,” says Henry.
“We support Wellington Free Ambulance because it is the only free emergency paramedic service in New Zealand,” he says.
“We believe that in the case of an emergency, first response care should be available to everyone, and no-one should be excluded because of cost.”
Claire Carruthers, Executive Director of Fundraising and Communications for Wellington Free Ambulance says “We are incredibly grateful for the ongoing support of Tommy’s and their team across our region. They are real ambassadors for our service in the community, always willing to help and really get behind raising funds to keep our service free of charge.”
Tommy’s is also a big supporter of Given For You, a Wellington-based charity that sources and distributes care packages to families lacking the simplest of materials needed for managing everyday life. It’s also a charity that Tommy’s own sales director Nicki Cruickshank and a group of others founded after recognising a need within the community.
“Organisations need funds to continue operating and it’s tough in this climate, but we are keen to give back to the community regardless – the money we make comes from the community so this is our way of giving back,” says Nicki. Tommy’s latest campaign dubbed “we’re just Wellingtonians selling Wellington” captures that community spirit. “It shows that we are real people and that we’re part of the community just like everybody else,” says Nicki.
As Nicki explains, sales are more than a one-off transaction, it’s a partnership. It’s not the Tommy’s distinctive green colours nor the signs that have earned Tommy’s position as the market leader, she says, it’s the staff, the culture, and supportive Wellingtonians. “We are big on building relationships, we believe in teamwork, it’s all about togetherness and helping each other out,” says Nicki.
“Because we are part of the community, it’s about building our community,”.
“People like us, because they are like us – Wellingtonians – and we will do whatever it takes to grow our community, in a good way.”
Tommy’s itself has become a household name since its inception 22 years ago. With its head office in Wellington city and more than 43 staff to boot (and 100 percent vaccination rate), there are eight franchised offices in Upper Hutt, Lower Hutt, Eastbourne, Mana, Kapiti, Whitby, Masterton and Wairarapa. “At the end of the day we’ve been part of this community for more than 20 years, and the partnerships we have with local organisations is our way of thanking the Wellington community for its support,”.
“We may be a successful real estate company, but we wear our hearts on our sleeve – and Covid or not, we remain community-focused, we are still proactive in the community and we are walking the talk.”