Rancho Cucamonga, CA –Inland Empire United Way (IEUW) held its sixth annual Challenge for Children Gala last night, March 9, 2017. The festive evening of dinner, drinks, live entertainment, and silent auctions raised funds for United Way’s programs that feed hungry children, provide school supplies to students in need, prepare youth for college and careers, and connect people with needed community resources.
The Sheraton Fairplex Conference Center was the venue for a cocktail reception, silent auction, and dinner. Over 550 guests were greeted with dance and music performances by students from Pomona Unified School District, smooth jazz provided by A. Ray Fuller, and lively dueling pianos by DoubleTree Hotel Claremont’s Piano Piano. The impressive array of auction lots included Kobe Bryant autographed sneakers, floor seats to a Clippers game, VIP Auto Club Speedway experience, rounds of golf at a variety of terrific courses, Knott’s Berry Farm tickets, Inland Pacific’s Nutcracker show, and game tickets to the Dodgers, Ducks, Angels, and Ontario Fury
The focus of the evening was the message of Creating New Possibilities for youth and families in the Inland Empire. With one in four children living in poverty in the region, United Way’s goal is to prepare local children for future self-sufficiency. Several testimonials demonstrated the group’s impact in the lives of low-income families as they seek to provide a better future for their children.
“I changed my situation with one call to 211, and United Way has created new possibilities for me and my children,” said Cynthia Torres in her testimonial at the event. “As a mom I once felt like a failure…today my kids are happy and healthy. We have a stable life that we’ve never had in the past, and I can’t thank United Way enough. The motivation and support from this organization is indescribable, and it has made a huge impact on our lives.”
“This was an incredible night with so many individuals and businesses recognizing the deep needs of families in our community and stepping up to help create new possibilities for kids in the Inland Empire. The work we do is only possible by joining together and it’s encouraging to see so many helping youth see beyond today’s challenges and realize their potential for a brighter tomorrow,” said Gregory Bradbard, President and CEO of the Inland Empire United Way.
This year’s Gala set an attendance and fundraising record. More than 550 generous guests gathered to do their part and raised over $100,000 that will now be used to help Inland Empire children and families in need.
Inland Empire United Way is committed to improving the lives and futures of children and families in need by investing in Education, Health, and Financial Stability. We are proud that contributions given local, stay local and an impressive 88% of every dollar is invested in direct program activities. By partnering with a network of local nonprofit organizations, United Way delivers critical services to our community, connects individuals in crisis with needed resources through 2-1-1, and increases the power of local charities by providing dedicated volunteers.www.ieuw.org
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