Last week I had the pleasure of speaking to the Statesboro Board of Realtors at their monthly meeting at Uncle Shugs BBQ Place on Main. This is the third time I have had the opportunity to speak to the realtors. It was the first time I was not asking for help with a community project.

The first time I spoke to them was during recovery efforts in the aftermath of hurricane Matthew. The second, was after hurricane Dorian devastated the Bahama’s and our community stepped up to help 23 students living in our area whose families were impacted by the hurricane. Both times they responded to my call for help in extraordinary ways.

Board of Realtors
Board of Realtors meeting at Uncle Shugs Credit: Grice Connect

With the recent tornado that hit Bryan County, it is a good time to educate our community to the role Bulloch VOAD and Grice Connect will play in times of disaster or need.

Bulloch VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Activated in Disaster) is a non-profit established after hurricane Matthew to help provide temporary humanitarian support for our citizens in the event of a local disaster. The VOAD works under the direction of Bulloch County EMA with wonderful partner agencies like United Way, Feed the Boro, Fostering Bulloch and local churches to coordinate and lead the relief efforts.

By coordinating these efforts, it allows public safety and law enforcement agencies to focus on managing the emergency at hand. Bulloch VOAD is a member of the National VOAD and Georgia VOAD organizations, which connects us to a vast number of resources in a time of need.

Bulloch VOAD also helps provide a unified message with Bulloch EMA in a time when immediate and accurate information is needed. We also connect local resources to match local needs in real time.

Grice Connect was initially created as a tool to help give our community a consistent place to turn when you need important information in times of a potential severe weather event or disaster. We partner with Bulloch VOAD and Bulloch EMA to push out messaging quickly to our community.

With the long response to COVID and through Grice Connect’s COVID reports, we have grown to be not only the place thousands in Statesboro and Bulloch turn to in times of need, but as a trusted source of information on a daily basis.

Local realtors are often the first citizen in our community that newcomers meet. They have an important role in highlighting the benefits of living, working or going to school here and in connecting them to important local resources like Bulloch VOAD and Grice Connect.

As and added bonus and probably the real reason so many attended, my wife, Lori Grice, attended the meeting with me and did a drawing for a Lori Grice headshot. A professional headshot is an important marketing tool for realtors. Congratulations to Sircondra Hayward for winning the Lori Grice professional headshot.

I want to also give a shoutout to Ronald Love with Platinum Landmark Realty for inviting me to speak.

Herschel DeWayne Grice is the founder of Grice Connect an online news and information company in Statesboro, Georgia. DeWayne has been active in the media for over three decades. He brings a unique insight...