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Taking Time to Give | By Kelly Twedell


Like many people, Jay Dowdy has the desire to volunteer but not much free time. The Fayetteville native stays busy as the Broker/Owner of Prudential All-American Realty, a business his father started. Jay Dowdy has, however, discovered that big-impact volunteering doesn’t take a lot of time — at least not when you look for creative ways to give. For instance, George O’Neal, a Army officer who dabbles in selling real estate, told Dowdy in the spring about a wounded soldier who needed help making his house easier to navigate. The soldier had hit an improvised explosive device (IED) while deployed and the explosion cost him his foot. Back home, the soldier’s two-story house needed work and the soldier, who was still learning to adapt to life without his foot, was struggling to make the repairs. Dowdy and his company paid for all the materials and labor needed to make the soldier’s two-story house more liveable and accessible. Dowdy was a military brat himself for 22 years and said that he has always been an avid supporter of the military and tries to say thank you to every service he meets. He said he also knows firsthand how much military families sacrifice. “The times you do have, make the best of it. It’s not always the length of time, but the quality of time you can spend together with your family,” he said. That’s a sentiment that can apply to many of the organizations and people Dowdy helps. Another of his favorite charities is The Sunshine Fund Kids Foundation. The non-profit organization was established in 1982 and is dedicated to helping children with cancer by providing quality group activities and emotional support to those undergoing treatment. Dowdy starts planning early for the annual community wide yard sale, an event he also spearheads, where 100% of proceeds go to The Sunshine Fund Kids Foundation. All four Fayetteville Prudential Real Estate offices and their agents come together each year to gather donations from businesses and individuals to prepare for the large scale event. Their offices were packed with items this year, enough to fill two PODS containers with clothing and other goods and this year’s sale raised $8,500, in addition to the $18,000 raised at an October golf tournament for the Foundation. From participating in charity golf tournaments to coaching his kids’ sports teams, Dowdy said he enjoys giving back to his community. He and his family are active members at Manna Church and he credits his success, and his desire to help others, to God. “I enjoy giving back, because I’ve been so blessed,” said Dowdy.