Granite Staters have an “All Hands on Deck” Spirit
Last Friday I had the opportunity to attend the 10th Annual Spring Fashion Show and Auction at The Castleton in Windham, NH. I work at CASA of NH so I already am well aware of the heartbreaking stories of child abuse and neglect that have occurred or are occurring in every community in this state. Fortunately, I am also familiar with the countless examples of how when a CASA volunteer stepped into these unfortunate and complicated situations, how they made all the difference in the life of a child. At what is likely the worst point in a child’s life, they at least have one caring adult who makes the commitment to stay connected to them until they have a safe and permanent home. Having a CASA in their corner often allows the child to have hope in what can otherwise feeling like a bleak situation.
So, I already knew that the 400+ volunteer advocates statewide are phenomenal; truly unsung every day heroes. What I got to see firsthand though, was how many other people are overwhelmingly generous and supportive of our desire to be able to provide each and every child in need. Not everyone is in a spot in their lives where they can be a volunteer advocate, however there are so many other ways people can support this work and last Friday was an incredible display of that.
There were so many fantastic people in attendance and who presented. Dr. Susan Lynch was the honorary chair of the event and also shared her support and passion for the work that CASA volunteers do. Mark Ericson of WOKQ was the emcee for the afternoon and had the support of MFI Productions. Amy Coveno and her inspiring new friend Zach helped with a very successful appeal. For the fashion show Susan Baroff of Benton’s Shoe Co. outfitted the female models with an impeccable eye and high quality, trend-setting, yet so affordable merchandise. (If you haven’t been to Benton’s – you absolutely must check it out!) The good people at Macy’s in the Mall of New Hampshire made sure the male models were every bit as stylish as their female counterparts.
Governor Hassan commented on how CASA is a group effort, what she likes to call“an all hands on deck spirit.” She added, “CASA represents what I feel is unique about the Granite State, We engage with each other, identify problems and challenges and then roll up our sleeves to get the job done.”
Senator Ayotte thanked the generous supporters and sponsors of CASA. She said, “I want to thank every single sponsor who is here today. Thank you for what you are doing to help CASA because you can make an incredible difference in the life of children in New Hampshire.”
One of those incredible sponsors was the Presenting Sponsor of the event, CruCon Cruise Outlet. Founder and President of CruCon, Sandra Cleary has an incredible story and was recently recognized by NHBR as an Outstanding Women in Business for her work on advocating for women in business, community involvement and her inspiration as a role model for future business people in our state. Ms. Cleary’s presentation was short but powerful. In addition to gracious contributions, she had purchased purple elephants for all the guests in attendance. She held up one of these sweet purple stuffed elephants and said, “an elephant does not forget. We never want to forget about those who cannot speak for themselves. We are proud to be a sponsor and hope it helps reach [the] goal of 100% of children in NH being protected.” If I didn’t love my job so much, I would apply for CruCon as I was so impressed by all they are doing and they are currently building a larger facility so they can double their number of employees.
These are just a few of my highlights from the 10th Annual Spring Fashion Show and Auction. I could go on and on about the dozens of other companies that selflessly contributed to making this event such a success and all of the individuals who work year round behind the scenes to make this event possible. There truly is something for everyone at this yearly event and best of all, it supports CASA of NH to get that much closer to their goal of getting to know and advocating for every child in our state who has been abused or neglected. Next year, be sure to check it out. You will not be disappointed.
CASA of NH is central to fulfilling society’s most fundamental obligation by making sure a qualified, compassionate adult will fight for and protect a child’s right to be safe, to be treated with dignity and respect, and to learn and grow in the security of a loving family.
If you would like more information on CASA or how to get involved, please feel free to comment below.