This year’s Fun for a Cause event raised over $15,000 to benefit Richmond LGBT groups and organizations and Monday those funds were distributed.
While not nearly as glamorous as the actual event, FFaC organizer John Jessie came to the Fan Free Clinic at the western tip of the Fan and produced the multiple manila envelopes of cash. The money was split between 3 groups – ROSMY, The Gay Community Center of Richmond, and the Fan Free Clinic
The first year of Fun for a cause raised just around $8,000, and now, 5 years later, the total funds raised has nearly doubled. “It’s been a really rewarding experience… just to see this community come together and support the people who have continually supported us for many years.” said Jesse with a smile a mile wide. He was giggling as Fan Free’s Executive Director Karen Legato was spreading some of the money on the table for a photo-op. “It’s great to be able to give back just a little bit of what they are worth.”
ROSMY’s ED Beth Panilaitis was on site to collect her groups portion of the funds. ROSMY, which works to support LGBT youth groups around the state, will use the money specifically for the Richmond office. “Everything raised goes to youth support groups, the 3 weekly support groups we have in Richmond,” said Panilaitis.
Legato, after she finished jokingly throwing throwing the money around the table, thanked Jesse for the work he’s done. “The money is essential for the work that we do at Fan Free.” Said Legato. The money will help offset costs of medical care and HIV support services here in Richmond.
Bill Harrison of the GCCR pointed out that the funds raised by Fun for a Cause would, ironically enough, go back into the community center’s grants program, effectively redistributing the money to groups like Fan Free and ROSMY. “We’re saving as much money as we can to distribute in December to other non-profits… So much of this money will go into our resvere fund for our grants program.”
You can check out our photo coverage of this years Fun for a Cause here. And if you see John Jesse, AKA Natasha Carrington, be sure to say ‘thanks’ for the work that’s been done.