The fundraising year has begunWritten by Christine Senack | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Now that the festivities of the holiday season are well behind and generous folks have had a couple of weeks for their wallets and credit card balances to recover, the gala fundraiser season has begun.
For decades, the Junior League of Toledo has kicked off the new year with a signature fundraiser. For the second year in a row, the League has held the “Chocolate Soiree,” an event featuring the best chocolate desserts and treats in town.
One of the loyal business supporters of the Junior League for over 20 years is Keith Brooks Florist. Brooks transforms banquet halls and other venues into visually interesting space for the League’s previous fundraisers and for the Chocolate Soiree. While Brooks receives some compensation for flowers, materials and labor, he donates more than half of the cost of his work to the League. Brooks’ motivation is one of giving back.
“The community supports me well so I want to support the community,” he said.
“Keith always goes above and beyond what we ask him to do. He is wonderful and makes the event truly amazing,” said Melanie Kyle, event chairperson. The Chocolate Soiree is expected to net approximately $50,000, Kyle said. Proceeds will fund the League’s current community projects addressing childhood obesity and promoting voluntarism in our community.
Two other organizations, Share Our Strength and the American Red Cross, celebrated the beginning of the 2009 charity galas with preview parties for their upcoming events.
The local volunteers of Share Our Strength gathered recently to kickoff ticket sales for the 14th annual Taste of the Nation-Toledo” The party also was in appreciation for this year’s ticket ambassadors, who play an integral role in the success of the spring gala. The gala has been sold out for the past seven years. Ambassadors encourage their friends, family and colleagues to buy tickets to the event.
The Taste of the Nation kickoff party gave the opportunity for grant recipients to showcase what their organizations do Toledo’s 2009 grant recipients include Toledo Grows, Toledo Day Nursery, Aurora House and Toledo Northwestern Ohio Food Bank.
Harold Jaffe Jewelers hosted “Prelude to the OSCARS,” an event designed by the American Red Cross to build excitement for its upcoming OSCAR Night 2009 Feb. 22.
Jeff Jaffe said he is pleased to have hosted the event for the past four years.
“We like to be involved with the Red Cross and it fits in with our belief in supporting many organizations in the community,” he said.
“Jeff and Laurie have been extremely supportive and generous to us for many years,” said Red Cross’ Jodie Tienvieri. “They are so involved in this community and donate much of their time and resources. We appreciate being an organization they believe in and give to.”
In addition to raising $390, the event raised awareness and created anticipation for the upcoming OSCAR Night.
Feb. 7 Dinner Auction. Join the Perrysburg Rotary for dinner, a silent auction and a live auction. Proceeds benefit the Rotary’s endowed scholarship at Owens Community College. Tickets are $50. See pburgrotary.com for more information.
Feb. 7 Heart and Soul 2009. This event to benefit Harbor Behavioral Healthcare will feature dinner, music and a silent auction. The event will take place at the suites level of Fifth Third Field. Tickets are $40. Visit harbor.org for more information.
Feb. 22 OSCAR Night 2009. Tickets are $100. See redcrosstoledo.org or call (419) 329-2619 for more information
April 26 Taste of the Nation-Toledo. Tickets are $150. See toledotaste.org for more information.
Christine Senack is a Toledo-based consultant helping non-profit organizations and businesses work smarter together for the greater good of our community. Connect with her on www.facebook.com or follow at www.twitter.com/csenack.