11/7/2008 - St Helena, CA-The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) today awarded $7.26 million raised at its 2008 Auction Napa Valley, giving grants to area healthcare, affordable housing and youth service non-profits, bringing the giving total to $85 million.
"The Auction is such a terrific aspect of our community where we see everyone come together to make it a success, and we are thrilled to have led the event this year," said Kathleen Heitz Myers, president of Heitz Wine Cellars who, along with her team, chaired the 2008 Auction.
An Outpouring of Generosity
The largest grants, totaling $1.7 million, were awarded to Community Health Clinic Ole and its Sister Ann Dental Clinic from the incredible outpouring of bidder generosity from the 2008 "Fund a Need" paddle raise held during the June event's Saturday Live Auction. With no prize to be won other than supporting medical care for children, bidders raised their paddles, beginning with those in for $1000, then those in for $5000 and so on, finally paying their top bid placed. When the lot closed, it raised money from 89 individual bidders and more than doubled the 2007 paddle raise revenue.
Maria Criscione Stel, Development Director, Community Health Clinic Ole said,
"Community Health Clinic Ole is honored to be counted among ANV's long-time beneficiaries. As we strive to make medical and dental services accessible to all Napa County residents, we will use the proceeds from this year's Fund a Need to help cover the cost of providing 62,000 patient visits at our six clinic sites."
2008 Giving Exceeds Promise
Last year, the NVV made a $25 million promise to the community, ensuring that the Auction will distribute a minimum of $5 million to its beneficiaries each year over the next five years. With the windfall of money raised at this year's event, the Auction was able to award 45% more than projected.
Pat Stotesbery, NVV's Board of Directors President said, "Given these shaky economic times, the vintners association is proud to fuel our local non-profits to strategically solve some of the most pressing issues in our community."
Stotesbery was referring to the new funding guidelines established last year after an extensive community needs assessment, done in cooperation with the NVV and the county's major healthcare providers. Additionally the NVV conducted a separate study to assess youth and affordable housing needs. These were conducted to ensure that overall Auction proceeds will have the most positive community impact possible and that the Auction's funding will be focusing on specific needs or criteria, rather than funding specific agencies or charities.
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