Federated Dorchester Neighborhood Houses, Inc. (FDNH) raised over $200,000 at a dinner honoring Governor Deval Patrick on June 4th at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. Over 300 people enjoyed the 5th annual networking event which celebrated FDNH's on-going commitment to transforming the community of Dorchester through education.
Governor Deval Patrick received FDNH's "One Step Closer" award for his lifetime dedication to urban education. "This award pays tribute to the Governor's pursuit of educational programs that guarantee every child a lifetime of opportunity," according to FDNH Chief Executive Officer, Mark Culliton.
Governor Deval Patrick expressed gratitude for the award and FDNH's contribution to Dorchester, saying, "The work, resources and time you give to moving us forward as a community helps us along the path to the better tomorrows."
The highlight of the evening was when 19-year old Dorchester resident James Feliz took the stage. Having joined FDNH's Out of School Time program as a Junior Leader at age 14, James shared his poignant story and the crucial role that FDNH played in helping him to overcome the negative influences of gangs, poverty and violence that were present in his neighborhood. James has remained with FDNH the past five years and continues to serve as a staff member today to help "kids like him." James explained to the crowd, "Some children might have all the odds stacked against them and it might seem like they have no chance for a positive futureâ€¦ At Federated, we truly care about the youth and believe they all deserve to live a successful life and graduate from college."
Margery Eagan (96.9 WTTK & The Boston Herald) and Jim Braude (96.9 WTTK & NECN) served as event emcees. "We are moved by the great work that is being accomplished through FDNH," said Jim Braude. "This was an opportunity for us to help shed light on the important issues that FDNH is tackling, and to inspire others to help."
Sean Curran, Vice Chair, FDNH Board of Directors commended event sponsors and attendees for bringing FDNH "One Step Closer" toward achieving its mission. Mr. Curran noted that corporate and table sponsors were significant to helping FDNH reach its fundraising goals within this year's tight economic climate, and gave special recognition to: Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Mr. Paul A. Zintl, Dr. Elizabeth P. Frost, Lee Kennedy Co., Inc., Massachusetts Convention Center Authority, the children of Ruth and Nelson Darling, Accenture, Arthur J. Hurley Company, Inc., John Hancock Financial Service, H. Levenbaum Insurance Agency, Nellie Mae Education Foundation, NSTAR, State Street Bank, and Red & Blue Foundation â€“ Suffolk Construction.
Event proceeds will support FDNH, which annually serves over 900 Dorchester residents through Early Education, Out of School Time, Adolescent Development, Alternative Education and Adult Education Programming.