Mazzoni Center gala aims to break fundraising records

Mazzoni Center gala aims to break fundraising records

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Mazzoni Center is aiming to raise $175,000 at its upcoming gala May 19 to provide additional funding for programs and services.

Organizers anticipate that this year’s gala will supersede its highest fundraising revenue of $150,000. The money will be used for existing programs and services that are not fully funded by grants and state funding such as primary health-care services, mental- and behavioral-health services and LGBTQ legal services. Two other programs slated to receive funds from the gala include the adolescent drop-in clinic and legal services. Another goal is to provide more funding for schooling programs, prevention education and outreach programs in STD and HIV work.

The funds raised will also apply to HIV and STI testing, the food bank, housing subsidies for families and individuals affected by HIV, support groups, outreach and education programs.

The event will be held at the University of Arts Dorrance Hamilton Hall. The gala’s theme is Metamorphosis, reflecting the changes and difficulties that Mazzoni Center has undergone in the last year. The theme reminds supporters that Mazzoni Center is carrying out its mission to provide comprehensive health and wellness services to the LGBTQ community even in trying times, said Larry Benjamin, Mazzoni’s director of communications.

“It’s been a year of change,” said Benjamin. “The motivation behind this gala is to reenergize the mission of the organization.”

More than 12,000 emails were sent to prospective attendees. A printing sponsorship allowed nearly 1,000 invitations to be sent out for the upcoming fundraiser. The gala is open to the public with ticket pricing starting at $260 for VIP and $165 for general admission. For those who are not able to attend the gala but still want to contribute, there will be an after-party with a $25 admission.  

The gala will also feature a silent auction.

Ticket proceeds allow Mazzoni Center to treat everyone, regardless of their economic status, said Mazzoni director of development and marketing Perry Monastero.  

“We never turn anyone away from our services based on their inability to pay, and we absorb that cost. Things like the gala give us the money that we can use to provide those services on a continuing basis,” he said.

The gala will spotlight local LGBT individuals who have given back to the community. Dr. Rachel Levine, Pennsylvania’s newly appointed secretary of health, Lee Fulton Carson and Egypt Staley will be awarded the Peter M. Mazzoni Award for youth leadership.

PGN is a media sponsor of the Metamorphasis gala.

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