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Victory Programs Dinnerfest RED sets new fundraising record

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Thursday Apr 27, 2017

Photo by David Fox
Photo by David Fox  

On Sunday, April 23 from 3 to 6 PM, Victory Programs celebrated another year of health, housing and prevention services with nearly 300 supporters at the 27th annual Dinnerfest RED Party + Auction fundraiser at Red Lantern on Stanhope Street in the Back Bay. This year's Dinnerfest raised more than $135,000, and set a new event record for the third year in a row with a 12% increase over last year's event revenue. Victory Programs has a proud, 42-year history of standing on the front lines of emerging public health challenges impacting our community here in Boston. Every penny raised at Dinnerfest and the organization's other signature events is put right back into services that benefit the most vulnerable members of our community.

This year the event coincides with the opening of New Joelyn's Home, a state-of-the-art, 24-bed women's residential recovery program housed in a freshly renovated Victorian home in Roxbury. The opening of New Joelyn's Home represents the latest chapter in Victory Programs' efforts to rebuild their women's recovery services in the wake of the unexpected permanent evacuation and closing of the first Joelyn's Family Home in October 2014 when the only bridge to Boston Harbor's Long Island where the program was located was closed on short notice due to structural issues. Between the opening of New Joelyn's Home this year and the expansion of two other women's residential recovery programs, New Victories for Women and Shepherd House, Victory Programs has built back 98% of the women's residential recovery capacity it had when the bridge closed.

This year's Dinnerfest Co-Chairs Tiffani Faison, Richard Gordon and Scott Kearnan were instrumental in building relationships with participating restaurants and other in-kind donors to bring in high quality donations from some of Boston's most coveted establishments. "Tiffani, Richard and Scott each brought their passion for our mission to their work as event co-chairs," shares Shauna Helton, Victory Programs' Special Events Manager. "That passion, paired with the deep ties each of them have established through years of working in the restaurant and entertainment industries here in Boston, really allowed us to take our auction prizes to a whole new level which paid off in record fundraising." Victory Programs once again tapped professional auctioneer Kathy Kingston to energize the crowd during the Live Auction and Fund-A-Need portions of the event. Members of the Imperial Court of Massachusetts and the Boston Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence volunteered at the event greeting guests and selling raffle tickets.

Despite the party atmosphere, this fundraiser serves to address a real, ongoing need for additional resources for public services like those provided at each of Victory Programs' 17 programs in Boston, Cambridge and Topsfield. Javier, a client from Victory House, Victory Programs' first program established in 1975, moved attendees by sharing his personal story of addiction and recovery during the height of the event. Jonathan Scott, Victory Programs' President and CEO shared his thoughts on this year's Dinnerfest: "Just fabulous. The whole event, the results, the energy, the everything. We can ALL be incredibly proud for creating and sustaining this wonderful gathering of friends and supporters."

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About Victory Programs
Victory Programs has more than 40 years of experience opening doors to hope, health and housing for individuals and families in need. Since its inception in 1975, the agency has expanded to 17 health, housing and prevention programs providing shelter and recovery services to more than 2,300 people annually. Victory Programs has a storied history of responding to emerging needs in the community - from being one of the first agencies in Massachusetts to allow HIV positive clients into its addiction recovery programs in 1981 to launching a mobile prevention unit in 2015 to reach individuals and families in the community and better serve their needs. Throughout its organizational growth, Victory Programs' commitment to those struggling with homelessness, drug and alcohol addiction and chronic illnesses like HIV/AIDS always remains its top priority.


Photo by David Fox  


Photo by David Fox  


Photo by David Fox  


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