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Matthews House Hospice raises close to $200,000 at virtual gala

October 9, 2020   ·   0 Comments

Matthews House Hospice held its Annual Butterfly Ball Gala virtually for the first time ever late last month, hosted by former Breakfast Television co-host, Kevin Frankish.

All 300 tickets were sold for the event, which was broadcasted by Rogers TV and the silent auction was a roaring success, altogether raising a total of almost $200,000.

The hospice has to fundraise 79 per cent of its budget each year, making events like the virtual gala critical to run its programming in the community.

“The event itself online was fantastic, it was very well-received and we are very thankful to Rogers TV for producing the event. They did an amazing job,” said Brenda Pufek, Community Engagement and Development at Matthews House.

“And, of course, Kevin Frankish, he’s fantastic. He hosted the event from here at Matthews House and he did an amazing job.”

Ticket purchasers received a charcuterie board, food tastings and wine delivered to their house or through curbside pickup prior to the event.

The gala featured testimonials from sponsors, staff members, and a client who shared the positive impact Matthews House is making in their lives.

Musical entertainment was also provided throughout the evening by both local and out-of-town performers.

“The feedback was fantastic, it really was, because unfortunately, as we all know, we can’t gather at this time, so to be able to still enjoy a performance and have food and wine, etc. delivered to you or curbside pickup was just great,” Pufek said.

Anyone who missed the event and would like to watch it online can visit:

The gala was one of many virtual events Matthews House has shifted to since March when COVID-19 started circulating in the community. The target of fundraising of 79 per cent of the hospice’s budget is going well due to the changes made to its annual fundraisers.

“We’ve really managed to adjust our fundraising to make it work virtually,” said Pufek.

“We’ve worked hard to pivot and change the way we’ve done things, and we’ve done quite well. The support of the community, following us along on this virtual adventure has been amazing.”

The donated funds help support the programs which are offered throughout South Simcoe, in New Tecumseth, Adjala-Tosorontio, Essa, Bradford, Innisfil and beyond.

In December, Matthews House will hold its annual Hope for the Holidays Memorial Event, taking place virtually this year on December 6.

“It’s a wonderful memorial event where in previous years we would gather in honour and in memory of someone special for Christmas,” said Pufek.

“This year, of course, we’re going virtual because we can’t gather, so it will be similar to the Butterfly Release where there will be a beautiful video and you can purchase luminaries,” she continued.

“It’s a lovely event and a nice way to remember someone special at Christmas.”

By Sam Odrowski
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter


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