2015-03-12 / Columns

WLV benefit gala raises over $600K


LOTSA HEART—Gerald Mathews, Pam Kogan and Jackson Kogan on the red carpet at the Feb. 28 Hearts for Hope gala in Westlake Village. Funds raised will support a center for homeless women and children. LOTSA HEART—Gerald Mathews, Pam Kogan and Jackson Kogan on the red carpet at the Feb. 28 Hearts for Hope gala in Westlake Village. Funds raised will support a center for homeless women and children. The nonprofit Union Rescue Mission presented the sixth annual Hearts for Hope gala, “A Future of Hope,” on Feb. 28 at the Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village.

Five hundred guests attended the event and more than $600,000 was raised to support Hope Gardens Family Center, a sanctuary for homeless women and children.

When the center opened in 2006, it only housed elderly women who lived on skid row. Now it is home to more than 175 women, children and elderly women.

The center offers programs to help the residents overcome their obstacles and create an independent life for themselves and their loved ones.

Actor and comedian Ryan O’Quinn hosted the evening.

The special guest host was Scott Minerd, chairman of investments and global chief investment officer for Guggenheim Partners.

Ray Sidney and Firm Soundation, a House of Blues band, performed, and Joy Enriquez debuted her new single, “Shelter.”

The celebrity guests were: Audrey Moore, Alley Mills, Andre Carter, Anthony Davis, Ashlyn Pearce, Falk Hentschel, Jay Hayden, Joy Enriquez, Kate Linder, Kylie Hughes, Lawrence Saint-Victor, Prophet, Ray Sidney, Rodney Jerkins, Ryan O’Quinn, Schuyler Hoversten, Charlie Matthau and Tommy Lasorda.

Every year, the Union Rescue Mission selects honorees for their contributions to the mission and its programs. This year’s honorees were Mr. and Mrs. Kevin Dretzka, Mr. and Mrs. Timothy J. Sloan, Charles W. Smith, Melinda Hoag Smith and the Hoag Family Foundation.

These families attended the opening of the Concord Lodge at Hope Garden’s Family Center. This facility provides space for 16 additional families to receive needed help.

Alan Melina, founder and CEO of New Heights Entertainment, a supporter of the mission and the center for over two decades, also received an award.

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