While the Kiwanis Club supports local charities and programs that help young people, the YMCA concentrates on keeping them fit and providing the tools for shaping good character.
“I think that Kiwanis and the YMCA have a lot in common because we both serve the children of the world,” said Marsha Jackson, gala chairwoman.
Founded in 1924, the Y serves more than 9,000 members or program participants a year. More than 4,000 swimming lessons are taught every year and 200 seniors a day use the aquatics center.
The Y also sends teens to Sacramento to learn about legislation through the Youth & Government program each year. More than 150 families rely on its preschool and after-school activities. Some 300 boys and girls are enrolled in the youth basketball program. More than 350 children attend camp during the summer.
And no one is ever turned away for lack of funds.
Last year, the Y provided more than $300,000 to help kids and families learn, grow and thrive, said JC Holt, president and chief executive of the YMCA.
“The Y was honored for 90 years as a recognized leader in youth development, healthy living and social responsibility,” he said. “That recognition from the Kiwanis was made even more special by their $5,000 contribution. One hundred percent of the gift will go toward our assistance program to help kids and families who otherwise might not be able to afford some Y programs.”
The Kiwanis gala features a reverse opportunity drawing. People's numbers are drawn until only five people remain. They then vote to either keep going so a winner takes all or they share the $5,000 grand prize.
Winners this year, who opted to take home $1,000 each, were Dennis Dunn, Kenneth Nielsen, Sam and Millie Engel, Gary Kessler and the city of Burbank.
Funds raised came from the cost of the reverse drawing tickets, the silent and live auction, and the program book ads, said past president Harvey Branman.
“This year, we added another drawing,” he said. “We sold just 100 tickets at $50 each for a 1-plus carat diamond.”
--JOYCE RUDOLPH can be contacted at email@example.com.