The Calling All Angels Gala will be celebrating its 10th year in 2017. We are already planning for our 10th Gala! The event has grown from 150 attendees at the first gala to more than 400 in attendance in 2016. We raised net proceeds of $47,000 the first year and are excited to say that we raised net proceeds of greater than $120,000 in 2016. Totaling nearly 1.3 million in gross proceeds for CARES in the past nine years. Thanks to the unyielding support of the CARES Advisory Board, this coming year (2016) we are expecting a record number of attendees and even more sponsors from our supportive community. This event continues as a grassroots effort in support of the CARES (Child Abuse Research Education and Service) Institute at the Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine. Our friends know this is a fabulous and highly anticipated annual fundraiser.
Steve Kantor, executive vice president of KEH Insurance who serves as gala founder and co-chair, was introduced to the Institute by fellow Advisory Board member Christine Messina and quickly came to “love what they do there.”
“We decided to organize an event to bring attention to the mission and work of CARES, but there was no budget. So we engaged in many one-on-one conversations, asking people to come and see what the Institute does,” said Mr. Kantor. “We were fortunate to get others interested and were able to move ahead with three goals in mind: awareness of the problem and how the Institute helps, respect and revenue-in that order.”
For nearly three decades, the CARES Institute has provided interdisciplinary, evidence-based medical and mental health services to children, families and developmentally challenged adults suffering from abuse, neglect or violence. Acknowledged as an international leader in this area, it treats over 2,200 children yearly in New Jersey’s lower seven counties, and also trains and educates health care, child protection and law enforcement professionals throughout the country and abroad.
“Child abuse and neglect is very difficult to talk about and bring into the public consciousness. The gala has helped de-stigmatize it,” said Martin A. Finkel, DO, co-director of the Institute. “For the Advisory Board to put on this event and raise awareness and funds is remarkable. We really rely on its advocacy.”
Co-director Esther Deblinger, PhD, agrees, stating “The Calling all Angels gala helps to ensure that we need not turn children away who need our help right here in South Jersey, while also supporting our efforts to enhance the expertise of child abuse professionals who are serving children exposed to abuse and violence around the nation and the world.”
Calling All Angels Gala Advisory Board
A group of individuals has decided to make a difference. We have decided to help the physicians and staff at The CARES Institute. Click here to view the members of the advisory board.