By: SNJ Today Staff
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The Fifth Annual “Deck the Hall — Festival of Trees” at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall hosted by Spectra and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for Children of Atlantic and Cape May Counties has generated $10,000 to benefit local abused and neglected children this holiday season according to a press release.
In conjunction and with the support of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) and the Press of Atlantic City, Spectra, a hosting and entertainment service, solicited the local community to sponsor 29 custom decorated holiday trees which are on display to the public in the Boardwalk Hall lobby through the duration of the holiday season. In addition, the public is invited to daily holiday organ recitals at noon through the end of the month.
“Members of these organizations spent the last week ‘decking’ Boardwalk Hall with their trees which were unveiled at a private kick-off reception with individuals and agencies that help local foster children and families,” the press release read.
Proceeds from the event will be used to help recruit and train more volunteers to serve and advocate for children living in the foster system of Atlantic and Cape May counties.
“We are most appreciative of the support of this year’s sponsors and the dedication of the entire Spectra team who organized this wonderful event on our behalf,” CASA’s Angie Waters, Executive Director, said. “The children that our volunteers advocate for often feel unseen and unheard, but this event shines a spotlight on the challenges that foster youth face and the many ways that everyone in our community can help provide a better future for each of them. Giving your time to volunteer or providing financial support to help an abused or neglected child will truly better their life, and in the process, enhance your own as well.”
To date, the annual ‘Deck the Hall – Festival of Trees’ event has generated $58,000 for local community organizations. The event has generated $52,000 total for CASA — and in 2014 $6,000 was raised for the Community FoodBank of New Jersey Southern Branch to support those in need.
“We are extremely pleased to be part of raising essential resources for such a worthy cause like CASA,” said CRDA Executive Director Matt Doherty. “The Deck the Hall tree displays truly capture the spirit of the holiday season.”
Spectra’s Jim McDonald, General Manager of Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall, said how Spectra is committed to giving back to the community.
“Once again, we are absolutely humbled by the support of our partners and local business community who contributed to this year’s event,” McDonald said. “Spectra is dedicated to giving back to our community and with the corroboration of the CRDA, we are proud to help support the critical services CASA provides to children in our region and continuing this tradition for years to come.”
The sponsors of the monthlong event include: the Press of Atlantic City, Carpenters Local 255, IBEW Local 351, Environmental Design Inc., Herman Goldner Company, Thomas Company, Inc., Local 322 Plumbers & Pipefitters, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC), ACUA – Atlantic County Utilities Authority, PSAV, KHS&S Contractors, Atlantic City Electric, RSP Command, Atlantic City PBA Local 24, Ducktown Tavern & Liquors, Harrison Beverage, Historic Organ Restoration Committee, Local 68 Operating Engineers, Vista Convention Services, IUPAT District Council 711, Ticketmaster, Falasca Mechanical, Ocean Casino & Resort, Smart City Networks, IATSE Local 77, and Tito’s Handmade Vodka.
Court Appointed Special Advocates of Atlantic and Cape May Counties and its trained volunteers speak on behalf of abused and neglected children in the foster care system and are dedicated to ensuring these children are placed in safe permanent homes as quickly as possible. Last fiscal year in Atlantic and Cape May Counties, CASA matched 681 children in foster care with 300 CASA volunteers and helped 273 children find safe, permanent homes. For more info, visit AtlanticCapeCASA.org.
For other local CASA programs, such as CASA of Cumberland, Gloucester, and Salem Counties, visit their website at: https://www.wespeakupforchildren.org/ or learn more about the National CASA organization.
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