Friday, April 24, 2009

Double-Exposure 2009

WOW, phew, HOORAY!

I think this is a pretty great story, but I’ll try to be brief because a friend said my postings were way too long.

In 2001 Carole Tanenbaum asked if I could help an organization called Houselink Community Homes out of a bind. They provide supportive housing and programming to help their members break the cycles of poverty that many become trapped in. Although they are lauded for their work, the government of the day was cutting back their funding by about $20,000.00 which would cause them to cancel some of their successful programs. We thought an auction of vintage and contemporary photographs might work and we enlisted just about everyone we knew to help us out. To our amazement we were able to raise over $40,000.00! It was decided to make it an annual event and in the following years we were able to grow the event.

This year we had an ambitious goal. Although the current economic situation makes raising money an even more difficult task than usual, if we were able to keep our totals close to what we’ve been able to raise in the past, our grand total raised since the event’s inception would bring us over the million dollar mark.

Please look at this website to see names of some of the wonderful people (artists, galleries, individuals and corporations) who gave so generously:

Our Auctioneer, Aly Boltman, did a fantastic job coaxing bidders who, in the end, paid $34,740.00 for items that had a total value estimated at $41,050. All things considered this has to be seen as a great result, but it did leave us exactly $5,150.00 short of our goal. Our MC, Andrea Case of CTV News, jumped to the podium and offered a behind the scene tour for whatever money people would care to donate. There was aggressive bidding by a couple of people – one of whom kept bidding against himself after apparently winning the lot at $2,000.00. After doubling his contribution, the under bidder was also awarded the tour for an amount that made up the difference to bring us over the million dollar amount. For me the icing on the cake was that the under bidder was Jodi Tanenbaum who had been the chief organizer of the event for many years. It was a very emotional moment. When the evening’s entertainment, Tyler Yarema, took the stage there was definitely reason to celebrate.

I hear one million, do I hear two?

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