Giving Where We Live

Children who are vulnerable have no resources and no voice on their own to advocate for change. That’s why our team at RE/MAX supports Backpack Buddies.
— Deborah Upton, RE/MAX Crest Realty

Deborah Upton is a fixture on the Vancouver real estate scene. Having been a Broker Owner under the RE/MAX Crest Realty banner since 1994 and now overseeing 8 offices with 550 associates of RE/MAX Crest, Central and Masters — she knows a thing or two about this city and what’s behind the doors in a neighbourhood.

“Whenever I put up a For Sale sign in a neighbourhood, I always look around the neighbourhood and wonder what’s going on in all those houses and apartments,” she reflects. “I wonder about how the kids are doing -- so often they’re invisible and through RE/MAX’s giving and being a Brokerage that Makes a Difference, we’re just trying to make them a bit more visible.”

But before she was in real estate, Deb worked with children as a teacher.

“One year during my teaching career, I spent time working as the in-house teacher at Children’s Hospital. It resonated deeply with me how vulnerable children really are and how seriously we need to be taking our responsibility as adults to protect them and advocate for them.”

It’s a lesson she’s never forgotten.

Since getting involved with Backpack Buddies in 2015, Deb has championed her team at RE/MAX to give over $140,000 to help bridge the weekend hunger gap. From purchasing our delivery vans to sponsoring our Food4Thought gala multiple years in a row, the depth of Deb’s conviction to serve our city’s most vulnerable children is nothing short of inspiring.

And it’s a philosophy she’d like to see all companies adopt.

“A company is like a person,” she explains. “The entity has the same responsibility to give back to the various communities that make the company’s existence and success possible. Generosity is a reflection of the understanding that these two things are intertwined -- one cannot exist without the other.”


Our team at Backpack Buddies is eternally grateful to Deb and her team for their inspiring generosity. Is your company interested in reaching Metro Vancouver’s most vulnerable children with Backpack Buddies? From volunteering with our packing and delivery team to hosting lunch and learns, the possibilities for partnerships are endless. We are keen to make your company’s giving experience meaningful to you -- so get in touch by clicking below.