Ladies night fundraiser is a model for success

What do you think about when you hear Ladies Night Out?

Community Living Dundas County (CLDC) held their third annual Ladies Night Out Fundraiser on October 13 at Matilda Hall in Dixon’s Corners complete with entertainment, shopping, prizes, refreshments and friendly conversation.

The event began at 6 p.m. with a variety of vendors showcasing their products and services. Their displays were arranged on the walls surrounding the twenty tables set up beautifully for guests.

Matilda Hall had a full house that night with at least 200 guests. 

On entering the hall, ladies were greeted with the sound of Claude Plamondon playing guitar and singing his songs.

Staff from the South Mountain branch of Scotiabank welcomed guests at the door. The bank also volunteered to match whatever proceeds were raised from the entrace fees.

At the entrance of the hall, Amber Rothwell welcomed guests by handing out free reusable CLDC logo bags.

Some of the food for the “ladies tea” was donated by Giant Tiger in Morrisburg, Riley’s Valumart in Morrisburg, Mike Dean’s Superstore in Winchester, and Andy’s Foodland in Winchester.

CLDC Executive Director Debbie Boardman reported, that CLDC “received cash donations and items for the silent auction from numerous businesses and organizations in South Dundas and North Dundas.”

The vendors in attendance “were extremely generous with donations for the door prizes.”

Two of the vendors provided the main entertainment of the evening by way of a fashion show.

Annette Quesnel from Juli Fashion Essentials in Morrisburg  along with  Amy Baker’s Jockey Person to Person from Winchester organized and presented some lovely fashions for the audience.

Quesnel’s volunteer models consisted of Chelsea Bosman, Leeanne Stata, Stephanie Barkley, Mary Roderick, Theresa Robillard, and Florence Oglestone.

Baker’s modelling volunteers were, in order of first appearance, Tracey Porteous, Joanne McCaslin, Wendy Hyndman, Julie McDonald, and Doris Baker. Tracey worked double duty filling in for an absent Juli model.

In addition to the many door prizes, there were also three draws. The first place prize was donated by Aura Escapes with a “girls get-away” package for four people in Cornwall including accommodations and meals. Elaine Whitteker was the winner.

The second place prize consisted of a spa bundle from Lakeshore Massage Therapy. The winner was Jeannie Fox-Dibble.

Agnes van Dodewaard won the third place prize of a Stokefire Gift Certificate.

After the fashion show and prizes, but before the finish of the silent auction, three board members rose to speak: Terry Boyd, Eunice Eldridge, and Marja Smellink.

Boyd began saying “we’re here tonight to share with you why CLDC is so important in so many ways.”

“We (Boyd, Eldridge, and Smellink) are all mothers of a child that has a disability. It’s only when you have a loved one with a disability in your family that you realize how important it is to have an agency like CDLC in your area.”

“They have made a difference for our families and so many others.”

As for CLDC, their website states: “CLDC supports the inclusion of people with an intellectual disability to the same extent that all people are included.”

“The thrust of current services and supports is to shift away from costly services that isolate family and friends, and towards services that include people in their community.”

“All people with an intellectual disability are entitled to be a part of Dundas County – to live, work, be educated and enjoy all that this community offers its citizens.”

The proceeds from the CLDC’s Ladies Night Out Fundraiser will go toward three projects, according to Boardman, first being transportation as there is an accessibility issue “due to lack of public transit and accessible vehicles.”

Another project includes repairs and updates to the Snoezelin Room, which is “open to anyone requiring an environment in which all of our senses may be stimulated.”

The third project earmarked for the fundraiser proceeds is a “new funding initiative, the George Davidson Family Resource Fund.”

Boardman reported: “This fund was created in the memory of George Davidson, a founding pioneer of the community living movement in Dundas County. As a long-standing member of the Board of Directors of our Association, George was an advocate for families as well as his own daughter, Susan. In his memory, his wife Barb has graciously donated money to set up the George Davidson Family Resource Fund.”

“The objective is to provide opportunities for training, resource materials, and communication supports.”

As for the Ladies Night Out event, Smellink had this to say during her speech: “Each and every one of you have been a part of making tonight a success.”

She thanked everyone for coming, saying “I’m grateful to live in a very compassionate and generous region.”

Amount raised was unknown at press time.

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