Good Neigh­bors

Res­i­dents of Gulf Har­bour lend a help­ing hand close to home

RSWLiving - - In The Community - Me­lanie Pa­gan is the as­sign­ment edi­tor and so­cial me­dia co­or­di­na­tor for TOTI Me­dia. Fol­low her on our Face­book, Twit­ter and Pin­ter­est pages, and at blog.to­ti­me­dia.com.

To Gulf Har­bour res­i­dents, poverty is a very real con­cept. Al­though the gated com­mu­nity con­sists of gor­geous man­sions, Har­lem Heights— a neigh­bor­hood where poverty lev­els are twice Lee County’s aver­age rate— lies only about a mile away. Driv­ing by the area on a reg­u­lar ba­sis can be enough in­cen­tive for Gulf Har­bour res­i­dents to help those liv­ing nearby. And with Love Your Neighbor, a pro­gram of The Heights Foun­da­tion, they can.

Since its in­cep­tion in 2008, Gulf Har­bour res­i­dents have opened up their homes to the an­nual fundraiser, which this year ben­e­fited The Heights Foun­da­tion’s sum­mer camp pro­gram. Open­ing their doors to the Jan­uary 15 af­fair and live auc­tion were Deb­bie and Tony Migliore. He­len and Lance Rogers held a VIP party be­fore­hand, where guests min­gled amid wine and bite- sized ap­pe­tiz­ers.

“We’ve made some won­der­ful friends here, and we’re happy to pro­vide our home,” said Lance, who ul­ti­mately cred­ited his wife for her con­tin­ued in­volve­ment with The Heights Foun­da­tion. In truth, each guest at the gath­er­ing was mod­est about giv­ing back, quickly ac­knowl­edg­ing an­other’s char­i­ta­ble ef­forts.

The Heights Foun­da­tion pres­i­dent Kathryn Kelly founded the or­ga­ni­za­tion with hopes to com­bine prom­i­nent com­mu­ni­ties with at- risk ones, and through the gen­eros­ity of oth­ers, Kelly’s dream has seem­ingly come true. “It’s fab­u­lous to have had donors stick with us for so long,” she said. “We’ve come a long way thanks to some folks.”

Learn more about The Heights Foun­da­tion and Love Your Neighbor at heights­foun­da­tion.org.

Kathy McKin­lay with VIP event host He­len Rogers

Bill and Caro­line Bloomhall with Nancy and Bill Mer­riam

Chuck Klucka and Daniel Zeu­gin

Hosts Deb­bie and Tony Migliore

Cliff Wil­liams, Kathryn Kelly, Fred and Elaine Hawkins

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