August’s “Helping Hand” nomination goes to animal-lover and Marana resident Sandy Northcutt.
A realtor with Long Realty, Northcutt donates a cumulative 10 percent of her commission from each property closing to four Tucson animal organizations to include the Humane Society, Ironwood Pigs Sanctuary, Pawsitively Cats, and the Equine Encore Foundation.
Though Northcutt is a contributor to about a dozen animal organizations, she chose these four this year because they target the widest array of critters.
“It’s not that one animal organization is better than the other, it’s so no animal is left behind,” she said. “Hopefully we will be successful with these four and add more next year.”
In a profession that depends largely on a thriving economy, Northcutt has seen first hand that people are not the only ones to be affected from the recession.
“Many people, because of the economic conditions, are losing their homes,” she said. “Many can’t afford the medical costs associated with animals anymore, or they have to move to a rental where they are not allowed to keep animals. I’ve seen the tears, the hearts bursting when they have to give their animals away. Animal charities are hurting even more than charities for the public.”
Animal shelters such as these are now being overpopulated, leaving those individuals who run them in dire need of volunteers and funding to keep up with the workload.
Northcutt, who works about 80 hours a week, isn’t able to offer her time, so she instead offers her money.
“It’s not so much about a single big dollar figure as it is about volume,” she said. “If these organizations have constant checks coming in, it will make a nice dent, and provide food, bedding, and medication that these companies need.”
Northcutt is working to spread the cause by encouraging competing agents to get on board.
“If I can encourage the agent on the other side of the deal to become involved, it will better help promote the cause,” she said. “We’re not asking agents to give anything until a deal is closed.”
For Northcutt, an animal lover since she was young, the feeling that comes from helping animals is far more rewarding than a larger paycheck.
“This helps me realize that there is more to real estate than business,” she said. “It opens up my mind and heart, and every time I help, I feel better. I feel like I can give ten times more the next day. We need to have joy in our hearts, and something like this simply makes me feel better.”
Northcutt encourages people to become involved in any way they can.
“If you aren’t considering buying or selling a home, please contribute by contacting a charity of your choice,” she said. “If you’re not able to give funds, do you have the time? Are you retired? Could you donate a little bit of time each week? If you can help financially, please do. If you have room in your home, please help foster.”
Northcutt is the proud owner of seven pets, including a dog she saved from a monsoon storm.
For more information, visit Northcutt’s website can be visited at snorthcutt.longrealty.com/.