Lutheran Community Services Northwestâ€™s (LCSNW) New Horizons fund-raising brunch raised more than $62,000 to benefit its South Puget Sound (SPS) programs.
Held at Tacomaâ€™s Landmark Convention Center, the annual event is LCSNWâ€™s largest fundraiser for its Home Care, Senior Companion, Senior Media Services, Meals on Wheels and Support U programs. Highlights of the event included a champagne social hour, buffet-style brunch, door prize drawings, silent auction and a program featuring real LCSNW client stories.
Bishop Richard E. Jaech of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Southwestern Washington Synod served as MC for a crowd of more than 300 guests. In addition, Roberta Nestaas delivered her final address as LCSNW President/CEO and outlined the bright future that lies ahead for the organization. Holding the reins at LCSNW for more than 20 years, Nestaas will retire July 1. She was presented with a special award to honor her devotion and outstanding contributions to the non-profit organization.
During her address, Roberta shared her own personal reflections and LCSNW memories, including how her mother received care from a Home Care aide early in her tenure as President. And, she affirmed that while the agencyâ€™s course is charted toward â€œnew horizons,â€ under new leadership, the South Sound community will continue to see lives changed through the mission and work of LCSNW.
Linda Dybwad of Zion Lutheran Church received the prestigious John Briehl Award for her dedication and many hours of work furthering the mission of LCSNW: Health, Justice and Hope. South Puget Sound Area Director Trudy Sorensen and Support U Program Director Pat Witt presented the award to Dybwad.
Home Care staff member Linda Powell shared how her own personal experience in caring for a dear friend inspired her to become a home care aide. She gave the audience some insight into her relationship with a client and her family, as they joined together to provide the care this woman needed to remain in her own home, with her husband, until the end of her life.
Julie Kerrigan, Director of LCSNWâ€™s Senior Companion program, also shared a moving story about one of her clients, an aging man who was blind and very isolated. He was matched with a senior volunteer who provided the help and companionship that enabled this gentleman to become more active and social, and greatly improved his quality of life.
LSCNW Major Gifts Officer Jaime Schilling outlined how donorsâ€™ gifts to LCSNW make these client success stories possible and reminded the audience that no gift is too small.
â€œSeniors and caregivers in our community need support in order to continue leading healthy, happy lives,â€ Schilling told the guests. â€œYour financial partnership with Lutheran Community Services makes these uplifting stories possible, and helps these neighbors of ours to not only survive, but to truly thrive in the later years of their lives. Every dollar we raise makes a difference.â€
The trio of Nikiesha, Jasmyn and Carolyn Thornton sang a beautiful rendition of â€œRevelation 19:1â€ and â€œIt is Well with My Soulâ€ at the event.
LCSNW extended special thanks to Pastor Jeff Ries of Zion Lutheran Church of Tacoma for leading the invocation at the brunch, to Chaplain Janet Grant of Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia for the benediction, to the brunch event planning committee, to the SPS Area Council and to the student volunteers for their work on the March 16 event.
Donations for SPS programs can be made at lcsnw.org/makeacontribution