Getting With the Programs

The event: YMCA Community Services' annual John and Donna Crean Reach Out Awards benefit at the Balboa Bay Club in Newport Beach. The recent luncheon for about 100 guests was held in honor of Hoag Hospital's Community Health Outreach department.

A new twist: Before sitting down to a chicken

and pasta luncheon, guests were invited to cruise auction tables in a reception area. But instead of luxury items, they came upon placards that explained the programs YMCA Community Services provides to Orange County families. Guests were encouraged to underwrite services such as counseling, gang violence prevention, tutoring and mentoring.

"Guests won't find jewelry and trips on the auction block today," said Adrienne Stokols, director of programs and community development for the YMCA of Orange County. "John and Donna Crean are philanthropic pacesetters--so we thought our event should reflect that. We didn't want to have an ordinary event."

Special guests included children served by the YMCA's New Horizons program, which provides the developmentally disabled with recreation and socialization experiences that help them lead productive lives.

Reaching out to the community: Dr. Gwyn Parry, a 30-year veteran of Hoag and director of the Newport Beach hospital's outreach program, received the Reach Out award from the Creans. (The Santa Ana Heights couple donated $25,000 to help underwrite the event.)

Hoag's outreach program provides nonprofit organizations such as YMCA Community Services with financial assistance. Other organizations

helped by Hoag include Girls Inc., the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, United Way and Adult Day Services of Orange County. Thanks to Hoag, Adult Day Services will open a $4.5-million respite care facility this month in Huntington Beach for Alzheimer patients.

"Our partnership with Hoag has made it possible to provide a beautiful center for dementia care that is affordable to everyone," said luncheon guest Cordula Dick-Muelhke, executive director of Adult Day Services.

Quote: "Our outreach program attempts to serve those who don't have access to health care--the vulnerable population," Parry said.

Guest list: Christine Carr, luncheon chairwoman; Jean Moonilal, executive director of YMCA Community Services; Jim Dale, master of ceremonies; actress Susie Vanderlip (who performed at the luncheon, portraying an emotionally abused gang member in a one-woman skit); Michael Stephens, Hoag president; and Peter Foulke, executive vice president of Hoag.

Other guests included Carl and Margaret Karcher; Art Wannlund, president of the YMCA of Orange County; and Bruce Clark, chairman of the YMCA board.

What's Next: Monte Carlo Night benefiting YMCA Community Services on Sept. 25 at the Chanteclair restaurant in Irvine. Information: (714) 549-9622; Ext. 54.

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