NewmarketToday is marking this giving season by celebrating Newmarket's Community Angels, the people whose kindness, compassion and community spirit help make our town one of the best to live in the country.
On Christmas Day, Newmarket resident Wasim Jarrah shared a message with friends on social media that was inspired by author JK Rowling.
Its essence was that “extraordinary transformations are possible”, especially if you’re not where you want to be in your life.
“Everything changes. Nothing is forever. Remember, Christmas Day is, in the end, just a day. It isn’t a test or a scorecard of you or your life, so be kind to yourself,” Rowling muses.
It was a fitting sentiment chosen by the head of the Wasim Jarrah Real Estate Team who, himself, devotes countless hours and donates much needed dollars to a wide variety of local causes and initiatives that help benefactors to overcome hurdles.
This month, Jarrah was part of a community panel that judged submissions from Blue Door Shelters staff on ways to prevent and end homelessness in York Region. The competition was billed as BluePrint, and Jarrah also donated the $1,000 first-prize award to help get the winner’s idea off the ground.
Jarrah believes homelessness will be the main issue in our community in 2020, and he diligently takes the time to raise awareness of the work being done by local non-profits such as Blue Door to help young people and adults on their journey out of homelessness.
But the kind-hearted realtor doesn’t stop there.
As someone known for his integrity, sincerity and selflessness, Jarrah is a trustee of the Newmarket Chamber of Commerce’s Awesome Foundation. That local group operates as a sort of giving circle, and Jarrah contributes $100 each month of his own money, along with the other trustees, to award a monthly $1,000 no-strings-attached grant to an individual or group in Newmarket with an idea to boost the community’s young people.
“I became a trustee to give people the opportunity to make their awesome ideas a reality and, in turn, to make a positive difference in other people’s lives. I also wanted to see current ‘awesome’ ideas expanded to reach more people through the contributions of the foundation,” Jarrah says on the chamber’s website.
From sponsoring the family-friendly Christmas event with Santa and Mrs. Claus for the past three years and providing scholarships to three graduating high school students each year to help pay for tuition, to active involvement with the Rotary Club of Newmarket and many others, Jarrah doesn’t hesitate to step forward.
Even when it means losing his trademark curls. Jarrah had his head shaved last April to raise funds for Southlake Regional Health Centre's pediatric oncology clinic.
At the end of the day, the father of two “wonderful kids” believes “we live in a society that is an awesome array and melting pot of so many cultures and religions”.
This Newmarket chamber’s professional services of the year 2018 business excellence award-winner plans to continue to build bridges in the community and support initiatives that truly leave no one behind.