Reach Child and Youth Development Society’s sixth annual Reach for the Stars gala set a fundraising record.
Held last Saturday night at Tsawwassen Springs, the banquet raised $120,237 to benefit children and youth with special needs and their families.
“The demonstration of community spirit completely electrified me,” said Reach development manager Kristin Bibbs. “I cannot express the depth of my gratitude to everyone who contributed so generously to support the children and families of Reach.”
Native North Deltan Steve Darling returned as MC at the gala and charmed the crowd. Delta South MLA Ian Paton served as auctioneer while Tsawwassen First Nation Chief Bryce Williams performed a traditional welcome.
Port of Vancouver was the presenting sponsor and Canadian Autoparts Toyota sponsored Oceans of Potential at the platinum level. In addition, Air Canada Foundation generously donated two tickets to anywhere in North America and Diamond Deals gave a diamond pendant as raffle prizes.
High points of the evening included a speech from Delta MP Carla Qualtrough applauding Reach’s work to support the potential of children.
A presentation on the Reach Delta Connex program raised awareness about children with fetal alcohol syndrome and the challenges their families face. Afterward, a pledge drive raised a stunning $12,755 for Connex families within five minutes.
“We are humbled and extremely grateful for all of the incredible donors and their generosity will go a long way in helping vulnerable families in our community,” said Reach Delta Connex manager Camille Netherton.
May Days Club Youth Choir, including children with autism, received a standing ovation for their performance that culminated in a moving rendition of This is Me with lyrics that promote acceptance and inclusion.
At the end of the evening, Reach Foundation chair Denis Horgan offered a big thank you to the many gala volunteers who made the event possible, businesses and individuals who donated and the guests who attended.