Mellody Farm | Chicago, IL | A Taste of Mellody Farm (Left)
East San Marco | Jacksonville, FL | Groundbreaking (Right)
Connecting with our communities is one of our core values. We promote philanthropic ideals and strive for the betterment of our communities by giving our time and financial support.
We aim to provide a thriving philanthropic program that helps the communities in which we live and work, and makes it easy for our team to give back in a manner that best suits them. We provide 52 hours per employee annually for Volunteer Time Off, and organize volunteering events for teams to work together to help those in need in their community. We also match employee donations.
Our philanthropic program was augmented in 2020 to provide virtual volunteering, and opportunities for in-person volunteering with COVID safety protocols in place, as well as giving back to those most impacted by the pandemic. Despite the challenges faced in 2020, the Regency team volunteered for nearly 980 hours, and 97% of us participated in our United Way campaign.
In 2020, almost $1.5 million was provided by Regency and our employees to nonprofit organizations. This included a Crisis Matching program in which employee donations and volunteer time were matched to provide support for the First Coast Relief Fund.
It also included our inaugural employee-led ouRCommunities program which provides all Regency employees the opportunity to participate in selecting an organization to receive a financial gift to support work that furthers a cause that is important
to them, and makes a difference in our communities. Giving partnerships are also a key component of our philanthropic activities and they fund initiatives such as The Corner Market: an innovative service that will provide food and product for 1,200
families in their own neighborhoods with an aim to help decrease food insecurity in the community.
In addition to ensuring strong local relationships, economic growth, and thriving centers to serve neighborhoods; we also work to demonstrate our respect for local culture and values. In 2020, we completed a review of property names and made changes where we found names were not in alignment with our corporate and communities' values. We now have a new process to review the names of prospective acquisitions to ensure our sensitivity to local culture and values will remain a priority as part of our DEI Strategy. It will help us ensure our centers are reflective of their surrounding communities and inclusive of the people who live there.
- Provide a philanthropic program with corporate donations to community organizations that align with our values and corporate support for employee philanthropic efforts
- Maintain 90% or greater employee participation in our annual United Way Campaign
Regency Team Gives Back More Than 2,000 Meals in 19 Cities
From Seattle to Miami, 75 employee volunteers from 19 Regency Centers’ offices gave back to their local communities by way of food donations to those in need. During a two-week period, 2,100 meals were donated by local offices teaming up and partnering
with more than a dozen local charities and local area restaurants.
"At Regency, we believe in giving back to the communities in which we live and work. The meals program is one of the many ways our teams across the country pulled together to help those that had been meaningfully impacted by the challenges of 2020."
Jan Xavier Hanak, Vice President, Marketing + Communications
Local Economic Impacts
Regency’s commitment to our communities includes investing for positive local economic impacts. When investing in property development, enhancement, and redevelopment we not only focus on creating an inviting environment for connecting merchants
and customers, we look at how our properties generate jobs, improve traffic flow, provide green spaces and increase taxable income. These efforts are complemented by our grocers, restaurants, and other service providers that serve the surrounding
To develop and operate best-in-class centers that provide benefits to the local economy, our efforts begin long before ground is broken and continue well after a center opens. For each project, we develop a stakeholder communication plan that ensures we cultivate strong and meaningful relationships with cities, municipalities, and local communities in the areas our centers are located. Being transparent and honest is incredibly important to those relationships, as is reaching stakeholders in the most appropriate forum.
Our stakeholder communication plans guide the manner and content of our communications and ensure our goal of transparency is achieved. It is paramount that our communities are engaged appropriately and we maximize the value they receive. The plans also help ensure project timelines are smoother and quicker than they may otherwise be.
Given its importance, members of our Executive Committee and our Managing Directors are involved in such engagements. Each plays an important role when we engage with public officials and community representatives to ensure that we achieve our goals, conduct business and operate our centers in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations, and deliver long-term economic benefits to our communities while driving value creation.
"Since the grand opening in 2018, Mellody Farm has become a place for the community to gather through onsite events. In a time where we couldn’t hold in-person events, but connecting our merchants and communities was crucial, we developed digital experiences with a ‘pick- up supplies in-store and attend online mentality’. The collaboration with Kids Science Labs gave our merchants the opportunity to meet new families, and connect while maintaining safety."
Stephanie Parisi, Property Marketing Manager
Tenant and Center Experience
It is important that our tenants and the communities they serve feel welcome and comfortable at our centers. It is imperative that they are safe and secure.
Our Property Operations teams work diligently to achieve this. Their efforts include ongoing property inspections to identify on-site improvements and manage maintenance, replacements, and enhancements to our centers; as well as annual inspections and reporting, facilitated by Insurance Risk Management.
At Regency, emergency preparedness is also a focus as we know that events beyond our control may impact our centers. We plan and provide for resilience at our properties and ensure our property managers are trained on a variety of issues, including hurricane and earthquake preparedness. When required, proactive measures are taken to educate and inform stakeholders that could be affected by adverse weather or other conditions. In addition, we undertook a comprehensive climate change risk analysis, and the results are informing our strategic planning efforts. Additional details on this exercise are provided in the TCFD section of this report.
Our community monitoring plan ensures that we use many channels to engage with and understand our tenants and shopping center visitors.
Tenants have direct contact details for our property managers and in addition, can use a work-order system on our corporate website to advise us of specific needs. Regular tenant surveys are also used to gain further insights into how our centers and engagement can be improved.
Public sentiment is gained from social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Each of our centers has a social media presence through which praise or concerns can be expressed. We also provide contact details at our centers for direct engagement with our operations team.
"Our team worked tirelessly to support both our tenants and our communities throughout the pandemic with such items as a detailed Tenant Resource Website, a Merchant Success toolkit, appropriate signage and a wayfinding program called “Social Distancing Made Easier” and the installation of Pick Up and Go Zones. In partnership with our tenants and communities, we worked through the challenges of 2020 and our properties not only survived, but thrived."
Scott Prigge, Managing Director, Property Operations
Regency's COVID Response
At the outset of the pandemic we quickly moved to establish Pick-Up and Go Zones, dedicated parking stalls for customer pick-up, enabling our essential tenants to deliver goods and services in a safe and efficient manner. Over a hundred of these zones have been implemented across our portfolio. Our merchants have also worked to implement protocols aligned with the CDC guidelines, as safety is jointly our main priority.