Decked in their finest denim, members of The Boulevard Club opened their wallets to raise $100,000 for Parkdale Activity-Recreation Centre’s (PARC) Community Meal Program and St. Joseph’s Health Care Centre’s Mental Health Emergency Services Unit.
This is the first time St. Joe’s has been involved in the Boulevard Club’s fundraising event, said Deborah Carlisle, director of marketing, communications and membership for the club.
“We chose St. Joe’s because it’s in our local area and because they work with PARC in some ways, and also we have a number of members who work at St. Joe’s and they brought to our attention some of the needs there,” Carlisle said.
Maria Dyck, president of St. Joseph Healthcare Centre Foundation, said she was pleased The Boulevard Club wanted to include them in this year’s event.
“We’re thankful to them for putting this all together and creating an opportunity for us to collaborate in a new way we haven’t been able to before,” Dyck said.
The event, which took place at The Boulevard Club Wednesday, Nov. 19, was hosted by Adam Growe, the host of Cash Cab Canada. The evening had a live and silent auction to raise funds.
“Instead of bidding to gain something tangible, you’re bidding to provide a meal for members of PARC or items that St. Joe’s needs,” Carlisle explained.
Members also had the option to provide a direct contribution to PARC or St. Joe’s or a split donation.
A portion of the proceeds raised will go toward St. Joe’s renovations of its mental health unit, which helps those struggling with addiction and mental health issues receive proper support.
“This is an area where we’d like to make some major improvements to the facility so we can provide the very best care,” Dyck said.
Some improvements include new equipment and the renovation of the lounge and dining area within the unit.
The other portion of the proceeds will benefit patrons of the Community Meal Program at PARC. Last year the meal program served more than 70,000 meals. The program has been running for 32 years and has been the central element to the Drop-in Centre and the doorway to different services offered at PARC.
The program is open twice a day for breakfast and lunch.
It costs $3,650 to feed a PARC member for a year or $1,500 for half a year.
PARC has been a recipient of fundraising benefits such as Denim and Diamonds Gala for seven years.
Kathy Allan, the director of resource development at PARC and a volunteer on The Boulevard Club’s Community Committee, was delighted to have St. Joe’s on board this year because it shows local charities working together to serve the community.
“It’s our first step into what PARC would like to see in the future, which is charities working together on all fronts towards a collective impact. We’re in it together. The sector is stronger if we work together.”
Online donations are still being accepted on The Boulevard Club’s website. To donate to PARC or St. Joseph’s Healthcare Centre, visit www.boulevardclub.com/denimanddiamonds2014
The article is taken from InsideToronto.com