As spring break comes around the corner, many children will be itching at the chance for a much-needed break from their curricular activities. However, not all families look forward to the two-week vacation. Some less-fortunate children look forward to school because it provides them with a meal they would’ve otherwise not had due to financial circumstances.

The West and SouthEast REALTORS® of the Valley’s (WeSERV) 2022 Leadership Class and the Rise and Dream Foundation came together to combat this dire issue by providing 75 children with non-perishable items. Items will be given to students at Gateway Pointe Elementary School in Gilbert. The children are given backpacks filled with food to supplement their meals throughout the break. Food consisting of breakfast, lunch, and dinner items are discreetly placed in the backpacks.

WeSERV’s Leadership Program conducts a service project designed to assist the community each year. After Sarita Hill, WeSERV Leadership Program participant passionately spoke about the Rise and Dream Foundation’s Harvest for the Hungry initiative, the group decided to work with the Rise and Dream Foundation.

“A lot of these children and their families don’t really have access to a lot of food. They rely on the school to provide breakfast and lunch,” Hill said. “You don’t realize how hard it is for people to support these types of initiatives because they can’t really wrap their heads around the fact that some families don’t have food at home. You don’t realize how many children come to school hungry.”

WeSERV’s Leadership Program students worked together to package the boxes of items. Bill Paden, who is part of the Leadership Program, said his company VIP Mortgage was able to make a $5,000 donation through the VIP Foundation to help support Harvest for the Hungry. The group went out to purchase the items to be donated. Being a father of two young boys, Paden was eager to help the Rise and Dream Foundation because he couldn’t imagine a young child not having food.

“This my opportunity to give back to my community that has given me a lot,” Paden said.

Visit for more information about the Rise and Dream Foundation.


West and SouthEast REALTORS® of the Valley West & SouthEast REALTORS® of the Valley (WeSERV), established in 1946, is a member-driven, not-for-profit REALTOR® trade association that serves over 26,000 REALTORS® and affiliates throughout Cochise, Maricopa, Pinal, and Santa Cruz Counties. Association volunteers and the Member Services Team work together to deliver resources, services, and education with a vision to be One Premier Association and the mission to provide services that lead to member prosperity. WeSERV also advocates for members and works to protect the real estate industry. Find more information at

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