Bliss Realty & Investments  ​


Holidays are a fun time for family traditions, but for children in foster care who are separated from their families, they can be painful. Bliss Realty brightened Easter for 10 children living at the Healing Hearts Youth Home in Gilbert by sharing some of their favorite traditions with them.

The entire brokerage some of its lenders helped with planning and preparation by donating supplies and money needed for a fun Easter party, including candy, treats, toys and stuffed animals for Easter baskets, kits for dyeing eggs, face paint and plastic eggs and candy for an egg hunt.

Eight Bliss agents and their families, along with six teenage volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, spent a Saturday afternoon painting the children’s faces and helping them color eggs, decorate Easter cookies, make sock bunnies and hunt for eggs. Thanks to Shannon Heinze at Guild Mortgage, the Easter Bunny made a surprise visit that delighted the kids.

“One of the Healing Hearts caregivers shared how she tried taking the younger children to the mall to meet the Easter Bunny, but the line was too long for the time they had,” says Mara Benson, Bliss co-owner. “The joy on their faces when they saw him was incredibly touching; after meeting these children and seeing how much they enjoyed doing things we take for granted, Bliss is already planning additional ways we can make a difference for them.”


As part of its commitment to give back to the community, a team of 17 Bliss Realty agents and their families recently volunteered for two hours at Feed My Starving Children in Mesa. While there, they packed nutrient-rich meals for children in the Philippines.

Four members of the Bliss team spent the time filling and sealing Manna packs containing 4,536 meals consisting of rice, soy, dried vegetables and vitamins, while four more worked at the labeling station. The remaining nine served on the warehouse crew, helping to replenish supplies at the packing tables and taking the 243 boxes filled during the shift to pallets that will be transported to orphanages, schools, medical clinics and feeding programs.

Bliss also supported the program by purchasing a decorative bowl made in Uganda; the bowl is on display in the office.

Thanks to Susana Gasca for coordinating the outing!


Every December, Realtors around the Valley sign up to help Salvation Army ring bells and help collect donations. Bliss agents showed their support every Wednesday.


Forty-five members of Oakwood Creative Care in Mesa started off the holidays with a sweet treat when Bliss Realty and Investments and Summit Funding stopped by to serve pie and apple cider last week.

Although Bliss has supported Oakwood for years—George Bliss serves on the board of directors, Mara Benson is an Oakwood Angel and the entire team helps raise funds and awareness throughout the year—it was the first time the team has visited the organization’s Red Mountain club to volunteer.

“Summit Funding was looking for a service project and reached out to our brokerage; it was our first event serving together, and was a huge success,” says Mara, Bliss’ co-owner and director of the residential division. “Putting smiles on everyone’s faces was so rewarding, and we’re already excited to do it again next year.”

An adult day care provider, Oakwood offers a variety of programs and therapies focused on treating the mind, body and spirit. Members spending the day there had their choice of apple, pecan and pumpkin pie with whipped cream.Bliss’ holiday service isn’t finished—the team is volunteering at Heggs Auto’s Third Annual Hellcats and Angels charity golf tournament to raise money to help Oakwood continue to provide research-based, cutting edge, person-directed care that allows its members to remain at home with their families while remaining engaged with purpose and meaning.

l. to r.) Mara Benson (Bliss), Sherri Friend (Oakwood), Valliere Jones (Bliss), Lisa Fischer (Bliss), Linda Pace (Bliss) and the team of Bridget Valenciano at Summit Funding


Because gardening is proven to reduce dementia symptoms and improve quality of life for those affected with it, Bliss Realty recently took advantage of the gorgeous Arizona spring weather to ensure those participating in gardening activities at Oakwood Creative Care have a beautiful place to do it.

Fourteen people—including Bliss agents Mara Benson, Sean Brown and Andrea Swanson and their family members—spent three hours weeding and laying turf in Oakwood’s garden area; some also repainted a room indoors.

“Having supported Oakwood in a variety of ways, Bliss has seen firsthand what a difference Oakwood’s programs make in the lives of its members,” says Benson, Bliss co-owner. “Knowing our service made it possible for Oakwood members to experience the benefits of gardening is tremendously fulfilling.”

Special thanks to Olivia Johnson, who obtained a turf donation from her employer, as well as missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who joined the effort!