Kiwanis honors homeless advocates at 15th annual ball
The Kiwanis Club of Lauderdale Lakes will honor two advocates for the homeless, Dennise Wilson and Dr. Celia Earle, at the 15th annual “Grand Charity Ball” taking place Sept.14 at Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six in Fort Lauderdale.
Wilson is the executive chef at LifeNet4Families, a social service agency that provides food, counseling, clothing, food stamps, showers, a mail room and other services to individuals and families in need. Each morning, Wilson and her team prepares hot nutritious meals in a community kitchen that feeds more than 200 individuals daily between 9 and 11 a.m.
Earle is an environmental engineer who created the “Christmas in July” event in 2002 to supply underwear, shoes and clothing to homeless children in Broward County. At the time of the inaugural event, Earle served as lieutenant governor of Florida Kiwanis Division 23, a group of 16 Kiwanis Clubs in northern Broward County. After 14 years, the event has outgrown its humble beginnings and is now hosted by the Broward County Commissioners each year at the BB&T Center in Sunrise where more than 1,000 children experience a day of carefree fun and receive a backpack filled with goodies.
On the night of the Fulfilling Dreams Through Service themed event, 400 guests will party to the sounds of Jamaican band Fab Five. The ballrooms will be decorated in a masquerade theme so guests are encouraged to don their masks for a night of revelry.
The annual “Grand Charity Ball” is the premier undertaking of the Kiwanis Club of Lauderdale Lakes and since 1999 has distributed more than $500,000 to various charities including SOS Children’s Village of Florida; Susan B Anthony Home & Recovery Center; Caribbean Heart Menders’ Association; scholarships to high school seniors; and other community service donations to organizations such as LifeNet4Families and Christmas in July Inc.
“This is our opportunity to really give back to the community and needy families with funds raised at the event,” said event chairwoman Michelle Cyrus-Brown.
The Kiwanis Club of Lauderdale Lakes was founded in 1998 by individuals with family and business interests in the city of Lauderdale Lakes. The current president is Dennis Freckleton and the club now has 64 members. The local club is one of more than 9,000 clubs worldwide that comprise Kiwanis International.
For more information, visit www.kcllws.com.
Don Douglas, back left, Annemarie Shelton-Daley, Barry Nugent, Michelle Cyrus-Brown and Roxanna Brown; Michael Facey, front left, Pauline Jones, Colin Betty, Giles Stewart and Dr. Celia Earle
Renee Pollack, left, Judge Giselle Pollack, Tony Spadaccia and John Albert
Eric Cyrus, left, Maria Pazos and Allen Whetsell