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Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Belmont Childcare Association raises more than $40K
Anna House event proceeds to benefit early child education
Sue Greico/Herald
Friends Cara Williams, left, Rose Valzovano, Darcy Tabako, Cathy Bozzonu, Lisa Oliveri, Nicole Nichols, Stefanie Lazzinaro, Donna Messina and Natalia Messina shared an afternoon of fun at the fashion show sponsored by the Belmont Child Care Association.

The Anna House Belmont Childcare Association, in Elmont, hosted its first annual fashion show fundraiser on Oct. 9 and raised $42,000, easily surpassing the expected figure of $30,000 from ticket sales, raffle tickets and 20 percent of sales from the boutiques.

The event, which was held to raise funds for the early education of the children of backstretch workers – the men and women who care for the horses at Belmont Racetrack – featured a fashion show, luncheon and several vendors that were set up under a tent. Runway Couture, a Bellmore-based fashion designer, conducted the show, which was promoted through the BCAA’s Facebook page, website and through personal invitations.

Donna Chenkin, executive director of the BCAA, told the Herald that she was pleasantly surprised by how successful the event turned out to be.

“The generosity of so many towards the children of Anna House was amazing,” Chenkin said. “I was overwhelmed by the number of people who attended and the amount spent by the attendees on the silent auction and boutique.”

Although anyone and everyone was invited to attend, the event was aimed toward attracting women, especially because there has been a rising number of female backstretch workers. The number of children being taken care of at Anna House has, as a result, also risen because mothers are able to utilize BCAA services while they work.

The idea for the event came from one of the members on the board of BCAA, Libby Imperio.

“Women are all about children,” Imperio said, “so I thought having a ladies’ luncheon and fashion show would be the best way to get women to the track and to show our cause of Belmont Childcare.”

Chenkin said there will absolutely be another fashion show and luncheon event next year because the attendees were very enthusiastic.

The BCAA is a non-profit organization that works to raise funds to provide quality childcare. It was founded in 1998 and the Anna House was built in 2002.

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