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AROUND TOWN: Empty Stocking Fund distributes more than $1 million
The white envelopes carried by 15 human service agencies Wednesday night at the Penrose House were their shares of more than $1 million, the sixth year The Gazette/El Pomar Foundation Empty Stocking Fund has topped that amount.
The final amount totaled $1,067,868.68 and 100% went to the agencies.
“This is the 29th year for the Empty Stocking Fund and El Pomar has been a part for half of those years,” said El Pomar’s Bill Hybl. There had been concern after the outpouring of support following the Waldo Canyon fire but “people dug down deep.” El Pomar matched $200,000 of the ESF donations.
Jerry Bruni whose foundation matched $70,000 of the donations said the people of this community want to help. People “want to be effective, they want to be part of a solution,” Bruni said. “They want to trust the 15 agencies” and the ESF agencies have lived up to that trust, he said.
Gazette Publisher Dan Steever told those at the closing reception, “This year has been particularly gratifying. We are really amazed and humbled by what the collective team, including donors, campaign partners, media partners and a host of others, has accomplished.”
Steever announced that business or organization donations between $100-$499 rose 154% and 12 of the recipient agency boards of directors had 100% participation donating to the Empty Stocking Fund. Steever said the community partnership events total was $58,000, a 23 percent increase from 2011.
Recipient agencies are: The American Red Cross of the Pikes Peak Region, Care and Share Food Bank, Ecumenical Social Ministries, Griffith Centers for Children Chins Up Youth & Family Services, Marian House and Catholic Charities, Mercy’s Gate (formerly Northern Churches Care), Partners In Housing, Peak Vista Community Health Centers, Pikes Peak Community Action Agency, The Salvation Army, Silver Key Senior Services, Southeast Family Center Armed Services YMCA, Tri-Lakes Cares, Urban Peak and Westside CARES.