The work of two high profile community organizations converged on the evening of September 28 at the West Island Black Community Association’s (WIBCA) annual fundraising evening, themed this year, Masquerade, and held at the Marcel Morin Community Centre.
Members of the West Island Blues Festival used the occasion to hand out $13,000 in donations to local charities including WIBCA, as well as to the Alzheimer’s Group, West Island Women’s Shelter, AJOI and Literacy Unlimited.
Errol Johnson, founder and driving force behind the Blues Fest who is also a long-serving city councilor in Dollard des Ormeaux, says this year’s postponement of the signature event due to inclement weather didn’t dampen the vibes nor attendance at the event.
Threats of day-long showers and high winds forced Johnson and his team of organizers to move the outdoor festival of music and family activities from its original date of June 15 to July 20.
“The rescheduled date in July was a good choice; it was well attended along with great music featuring the Freddie James Project and Sylvie Desgroseilliers,” Johnson quipped.
Blues Fest organizers used the banquet to highlight partners: The City of Dollard des Ormeaux and the Borough of Pierrefonds/Roxboro, as well as major sponsors including TD Bank, Allstate Assurance, Audi West Island and the JN Bank.
For officers and members of WIBCA, which is entering its 38th year of service to its community, the Blues Fest donation and other fundraising proceeds will assist in shoring up existing programs such as tutorials, legal clinics and its youth mentoring group, as well as the establishment of new ones such as its proposed Youth Drop In Center.
This year the association changed the format of its annual gala, into a themed evening to attract a wider diversity of attendees and cut overhead cost.
In a statement, they claimed it to be a big success.
They also used the occasion to hand out four scholarships and honor Frank Baylis, former Member of Parliament for Pierrefonds-Dollard des Ormeaux and a standout supporter of the association.
Info: Check out West Island Black Community Association (WIBCA) 48C, 4th Avenue South Roxboro, Qc H8Y 2M2. Call (514) 683-3925 or at www.wibca.org