Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation (DCWAF), recognized as the fifth largest charity wine auction in the U.S. by Wine Spectator, is pleased to announce the donation of $1.2 million to 16 children’s charities in Northwest Florida following its first virtual auction on August 22. Each charity was awarded their funding in a private check presentation ceremony, adapted to fit social distancing guidelines.
“In a year when we were not even sure we would be able to host our auction, all of us associated with DCWAF are profoundly grateful to present these needed funds to our charity partners,” said Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation President John Russell. “It is their collective mission to help children in need that motivated all of us to find a pathway to success.”
This year’s auction, which was forced to transition to a virtual format due to COVID-19, marks 15 years of charitable giving for DCWAF. Since its inception, the Foundation has awarded over $22 million to its partner charities, all serving the critical needs of children locally in Northwest Florida. While the amount donated is less than previous years, it is an outstanding success for DCWAF’s partner organizations in a time when almost all fundraising events have been cancelled or postponed.
The 2020 recipients of Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation funds include:
AMIkids Emerald Coast received $80,000 to fund a GED program for at risk students between the ages of 16 – 24.
Ascension Sacred Heart Emerald Coast received $83,000 to fund Pediatric and Family Birth Place equipment to include Halo Bassinets, Vein Viewer, Bili Lights, and Glidescope.
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast received $65,000 to allow 65 students from low income households to attend programming for one full year. The programming is designed to provide unique opportunities to learn, grow and to recognize youth for their achievements in an effort to steer youth clear of personal failure.
Children in Crisis received $80,000 to fund the facilitation of housing for abused, neglected and abandoned children. On-site housing provides stability, shelter, house parents, food, clothing and necessary items to help children live a safe and healthy lifestyle over the next year.
Children’s Volunteer Health Network received $65,000 to fund and serve underinsured and uninsured children in need of dental care. These funds will allow for hygienists and staff on the Mobile Dental Clinic, the Healthcare Referral Network, and dental supplies for the Mobile Clinic to assist with children in need of dental and medical care.
Emerald Coast Autism Center received $70,000 to fund behavioral therapists and job coaches as they launch a new Transition to Work program.
Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center received $75,000 to support mental health therapy, medical programs, and a case advocacy program that facilitates a child-friendly atmosphere offering counseling, family services, and coordination of investigations for child abuse and neglect.
Food for Thought Outreach received $85,000 to fund food and program supplies such as masks and hand sanitizing products so that children and families that are normally dependent upon free or reduced school meals are able to continue receiving nutritious meals during the pandemic.
Habitat for Humanity of Walton County received $75,000 to fund the building of a new home for families with children in North and South Walton County.
Mental Health Association of Okaloosa and Walton Counties received $75,000 to fund the Brain Health Program geared toward early identification, assessment, and treatment for approximately 12 uninsured students ages 12 to 21 who experience mental health or substance abuse issues.
Opportunity Place, Inc., received $80,000 to fund immediate housing for homeless children and their families to ensure they are safe and secure. These funds will facilitate a variety of child services including child-centered case management support, shelter services, child and family assistance, and enrichment activities.
Pathways for Change received $60,000 to fund a residential treatment program for men and their families actively seeking substance abuse treatment through an 18-month reentry initiative.
Shelter House of Northwest Florida received $72,000 to fund mental health play therapy, counseling, and advocacy for youth touched by domestic violence as well as childcare, and other program supplies.
The Arc of the Emerald Coast received $75,000 to fund the renovation of their facility warehouse into an after-school program center for children living with disabilities.
Westonwood Ranch received $75,000 for scholarships for children on the autism spectrum to include the Part-Time Job Skills Program as well as funding maintenance and repairs to the Educational Center and Aquaponics Farm.
Youth Village received $85,000 to fund program operations and ensure their doors can remain open and serving children beyond the pandemic.
The dates for next year’s Destin Charity Wine Auction Weekend, the Foundation’s signature fundraising event, are set for April 23-25, 2021. The Foundation is already planning in anticipation of its 16th annual auction and will release tickets and details on the auction’s format in early January. Learn more at http://www.DCWAF.org