The eighth annual “Give Through Golf Outing,” held on August 8, raised $150,000 for children and adults with developmental disabilities and complex health issues who are served by Richmond Community Services. The event, held at Old Westbury Golf & Country Club on Long Island, featured a day on the links for 116 golfers, a cocktail reception, dinner and auction.
Stu Goldman, with M. Hidary & Co. Inc., a resident of Old Westbury, New York, and John Cory, owner of Tenny Journal Specialists and a resident of Fort Lee, New Jersey led a committee of volunteers, parents and staff members who worked diligently to organize the event.
Kicking off the evening, Edward Spauster, Ph.D, President and CEO welcomed guests and thanked them for helping Richmond continue to provide the high level of support and services to individuals in its programs.
Estelle Miles of Mount Vernon, whose son Adam lives in one of Richmond’s wheelchair accessible homes, shared how Adam’s life and hers have been enriched in so many ways by Richmond Community Services. One day, for example, she hurriedly sprinted out of work in order to get the shopping done in time to get back home before Adam’s caregiver had to leave. This was shortly after he moved to a Richmond residence. “I suddenly realized that I no longer had to rush home in a panic. I actually paused and felt such a breath of relief knowing that he was safe and that I could slow down for the first time ever,” she said. She also mentioned how remarkable it is for Adam to be able to speak, using the voice technology provided by Richmond. From the audience Adam shouted out, “I love you, Mom.”
In the midst of an exciting auction of fabulous trips, sporting events and other prizes, professional auctioneer Stephen H. Schofield, with Kingston Auction Company, paused for Fund the Future, which raised funds for a living space with assisted technology and adaptive equipment to help people who cannot walk or speak to gain greater independence. Pam Dingee of Yonkers, who with husband Eddie and son Jimmy was a guest at the dinner, spoke eloquently about how Richmond’s innovative use of assistive technology can change the life of a person with disabilities, transforming it from limitation to independence. Communication aides, for example, can literally give voice to the thoughts of individuals who cannot speak.
Mrs. Dingee recounted how her son Jimmy, who cannot talk to express himself, came home from school one day and as always, she asked him how school was. “He told me to leave him alone; he wanted to watch TV,” she exclaimed. “While most parents would think nothing of it, I immediately burst into tears. Not because of what he said, but because it was the first time I had ever heard him talk.”