More than 130 people came out to celebrate dreamers at the Dream Catchers Benefit for The Arc of Orange County held March 31, 2016 at Anthony’s Pier 9, New Windsor, New York. This heartwarming which raised over $30,000 for The Arc of Orange County recognizes the extraordinary people who are supported by, work for, volunteer for, and partner with The Arc of Orange County. This year’s event honored Vicky Padworski, Joanne Murray, and the American Cancer Society of the Hudson Valley.
Jeffrey Sculley, Chairperson of Dream Catchers explained, “The event celebrates a community of action, compassion, and the realization that all of us contribute positively to the world. All of us have a role in the world we create and all of us are part and participants in the dream of a world free of discrimination and limits – be we the dreamer, the mentor, or the community.”
Vicky Padworski has lived in one of The Arc of Orange County’s houses since 1980, working in the organization’s sheltered workshop until 2001 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. While Vicky needed to discontinue working she wanted to continue to be productive, so she began attending The Arc’s day program and making beaded bracelets during the day and at home. With the help of Joanne Murray, the manager of the home she lives in who was also honored at the event, Vicky began to sell the bracelets as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society of the Hudson Valley. In 2015, at the age of 98, Vicky participated in and raised $500 for the Making Strides for Breast Cancer Walk held each year at Monroe Woodbury Commons.
Jeffrey Sculley, Esq. Chair of the Dream Catchers Committee was also the Master of Ceremonies. Gary Fox, President of The Arc’s Board of Directors provided the invocation and Christopher Fortune, executive director of The Arc of Orange County gave opening remarks. Guest speakers included Steven Kroll, executive director of NYSARC, Inc., and Chester Finn, Special Assistant to the Commissioner of OPWDD.
Sponsors of the Dream Catchers event included The Kaplan Family Foundations, Relph Benefit Advisors, The Bonadio Group, William A. Smith & Son, Rider, Weiner & Frankel, Mid-Hudson Auction Galleries, Mobile Life Support Services, Wallkill Valley Federal Savings and Loan, Focused Wealth Management and Walden Savings Bank.