For the first time in three years, the Hockomock Area YMCA hosted its annual Reach Out campaign breakfast Thursday at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro.
The goal is to raise $1.4 million for this year’s campaign. The breakfast raised $203,000, bringing the total raised to date to $1.2 million.
The campaign raises money to provide confidential financial assistance and program subsidies to children and families in need.
Programs at the Y benefiting from the fundraiser include child care, teen activities, summer camp, bullying prevention and the Food Access Initiative as well as a program for cancer survivors and their families.
“The YMCA does a lot of good for a lot of people,” Hockomock Y member Nadine Bullock told attendees. “I am one of those people as well.”
She said her family received a scholarship for her children to attend summer camp.
“My children needed to have fun in a place with understanding, helpful people. They needed to be doing fun things for the sake of childhood itself and to experience joy and laughter,” Bullock said. “Thank you to all the people who have made camp possible for our family and to each of you for considering a scholarship donation.”
The Hockomock Y’s board of directors issued a $50,000 challenge to event attendees, matching all leadership gifts of $500 or more.
Another guest speaker was friend of the YMCA Norm Bossio.
“For over 50 years, the Hockomock Area YMCA has had a vision. You’re here today to help with that vision,” said Bossio, who credits experiences in his youth for making a difference in his life and making it his mission to continue to help and inspire others.
Farzin Karim, vice chair of the YMCA’s board, shared her story, too.
“I benefited because someone just like one of you in this room made a donation to the Y and allowed me to experience camp for a couple of weeks at a local YMCA. And in that experience at the Y, it changed my life,” Karim said. “You have an opportunity to change someone’s life.”
“This annual gathering of caring, compassionate members of our community never fails to inspire me, and never fails to remind me of why I’m involved and why what the Y does is so important,” said Eric Kevorkian, chair of the Y’s board .
YMCA board member Mary Clermont, the Y’s immediate past chair, added, “The Hockomock Y is our home and it’s our community. Charity starts here today. People need help and together, we can impact the lives of so many in our community.”
The nonprofit YMCA serves 15 communities, including Foxboro.
CEI Jim Downs thanked attendees for believing in and supporting the Y’s mission of being there for children and families in need providing a “critical community safety net.”
Due to the pandemic, the breakfast was last held in March 2019.
To make a gift or learn how you can volunteer, visit www.hockymca.org/give.