The Cochrane Pregnancy Care Centre is getting ready to hold their annual gala evening on March 15th.
The dinner, program, and auction is the non-profit’s primary fundraiser for the year, and they are hopeful that this year's event is just as successful as years past.
Laurel Pedersen, Executive Director, shares the annual gala has been held for numerous years over the organization's 26-year history. "This is our primary fundraiser for the year, and our goal is to raise 45,000 dollars. Our operations and reach are both growing and so our fundraising goal is growing as well. The biggest part of our fundraiser is the dessert auction as we have live auctioneers and really amazing cakes, so it is lively for about a half hour with lots of people yelling, jumping around, and hands flying. People have been very generous for the whole time of the Centre's history."
While the main purpose of the gala is to fundraise for much-needed operational funding, it also allows for the Pregnancy Care Centre to share client stories and details of their operations. "It is a really good event to come and learn more about what we are doing and the impacts the organization is having. It is informative for donors and potential donors, as well as financially beneficial for the Centre."
Although the gala helps offset backend operational expenses, the organization has a long term goal of eventually building a home of its own. Currently, leasing space in Sheridan Mall, Pedersen, says they are very excited at the future plans and possibilities which will fill a niche for Cochrane and surrounding communities. "We have launched a capital campaign for a new program centre of our own, a maternity home, and transitional apartments. Our primary focus is when people are making a pregnancy decision that they have informed consent and they take the time they need to evaluate all their options and make a good longterm decision, as well as receive, follow up support to whatever decision they make. Our client's come from all kinds of situations but often they do need support even if it's for just a short period of time. We consider our services to be critical for people during those crucial moments or period of time in their lives."
The Centre provides information about adoption, abortion procedures and risks, as well as parenting support classes including prenatal, earn while you learn, infant parenting, and valuable relationship support. "Clients self-refer and decide how long they want to stay and how long they need us for. We just want to be a refuge and safe place for them to come and talk, learn, and make their own best decision. We are client-focused and so when they arrive they don't have to fit into 'our plan or our program', they can come as they are and we will endeavour to meet them where they are at."
For the past couple of years, the annual Gala evening has sold out and Pedersen is hoping for a repeat again this year. "We are hoping to close ticket sales on March 6th and we would be thrilled to sell out early which will allow our patient caterer to know ahead of time."
The Cochrane Pregnancy Care Centre Annual Gala will be held at the Cochrane Alliance Church with doors opening at 6 o'clock on the 15th. Ticket costs for the evening which includes dinner and the program are $50 each or $350 for a table of eight. If you would like to secure your's, you can order online by going HERE.