From our participants and families to our staff and board members, the entire Eden community was celebrated during this year’s Eden Dreams gala. The virtual gala, Eden Dreams La Vie En Rose, raised over $134,000 to support children and adults with autism!
“Our creative approach to this year’s gala was certainly a timely one. Despite the challenges we currently face, La Vie en Rose speaks to Eden’s future with hope and optimism,” said Eden Trustee and Chair of the Eden Dreams Committee Maribeth Edmunds. “On behalf of the Eden Dreams committee, I extend a sincere thank you to our donors and sponsors for their generosity that helps to sustain Eden and the important work that the organization does for our participants and families.”
The highlight of the evening was the presentation of “The Ari Shiner Story.” The two-part video series told the story of Ari, the first individual with autism to be hired by Wawa. Many know that Ari paved the way for thousands of individuals with disabilities to gain employment opportunities, but few know that he’s been defeating the odds since birth.
Throughout the film, his family members share stories about Ari’s childhood and what it’s been like to watch him grow during his time at Eden. To watch the two-part “Ari Shiner Story,” visit our YouTube channel.
Eden’s Board of Trustees kept the celebration alive by making a $20,000 donation in honor of Board Chairman Mark Berkowsky, who is currently serving his last term on the board. Mark has worked to advance Eden’s mission for three decades. Most notably, he played an instrumental role in the opening of our Schalks Crossing Day Center for aging adults with autism and the opening of our new residence in Cranbury.
To everyone who watched the livestream, donated, and sponsored the event, we are tremendously grateful for your support. Without you, we’d be unable to carry out our mission to improve the lives of people with autism one individual at a time, one family at a time, one community at a time.