Submitted by Boys & Girls Clubs of Whatcom County

Boys & Girls Clubs of Whatcom County (BGCWC) is thrilled to announce an overwhelming response to its first Virtual Annual Gala, aptly titled Reimagine Higher Dreams.

With longtime supporter BP as presenting sponsor, the online event was live-streamed from the Silver Reef Casino Resort and raised an astounding $301,882 in just one hour and 15 minutes. With 917 views and 41 auction items, most items were bid up above their stated value. At-home viewers also were able to provide support by sponsoring children at $50 and above. While the membership fee at the Clubs is just $40 per year, the actual cost of providing essential services for one year is approximately $1,500 per child. Event proceeds will benefit nearly 4,000 Whatcom County youth.

Support for the fundraiser began well before its June 5th streaming as guests not only could register pre-event bids on auction items, but also could add an extra touch of festivity by pre-ordering a “gala in a box,” including beverages and appetizers for two, to enjoy during the live-streaming of the program.

While not a gala in a traditional sense, Reimagine Higher Dreams was still a celebration of our community coming together in the truest sense, according to BGCWC CEO Heather Powell. “Like so much else right now, a virtual event was uncharted territory for us,” she says, “But the community absolutely embraced it. Even during these uncertain times, people in Whatcom County are as generous and committed as ever to the Clubs and our kids. We are deeply grateful for their support.”

BGCWC was founded in 1946 with the mission of enabling all young people, especially those who need them most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.

Our Clubs are open to all youth ages 6-18. BGCWC knows that kids who are involved in positive youth development activities will be less likely to drop out of school, participate in crime, or use drugs and alcohol. Instead, they are far more likely to graduate from high school prepared for college and/or a productive career, with healthy, positive coping skills.

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