Child Crisis Arizona welcomed 500 guests to its annual Lunch for Love fundraising luncheon on Wednesday, October 2, at the Arizona Biltmore Resort.

“We are pleased to announce that our Lunch for Love fundraising event surpassed our $1M goal,” said Torrie Taj, Child Crisis Arizona CEO. “This event is an integral piece of our fundraising strategy and provides for operations, future growth and sustainability.” 

Lunch for Love provides an opportunity for Child Crisis Arizona’s board members and major donors to invite friends and colleagues to learn more about the organization’s mission and vision, and hear stories about the impact the agency’s prevention, intervention and education programs have on children, families and the community. The event was sponsored by The Bidstrup Foundation, General Dynamics, Jaburg Wilk Attorneys at Law, and Ford Motor Company.

Board Chair Karilee Ramaley set the tone for this inspirational afternoon by talking about the bravery and resiliency she witnessed when meeting children who have suffered from abuse and neglect.

“We must, and we will, continue to be courageous and build the support systems and programs to help children and our clients because every single child matters,” said Torrie Taj as she expressed Child Crisis Arizona’s commitment to doing more for Arizona’s most vulnerable children.

Child Crisis Arizona provided 78,000 nights of safety to children this past year through its Emergency Children’s Placement programs. The Shaw and Rivera families shared how their lives were forever changed when they opened their home to children in the foster care system. Gage Hughes talked about his own experience as a child in the agency’s emergency shelter. The services provided by Child Crisis Arizona helped him become the man he is today—a college graduate with a full-time job and a family of his own. “Looking back, I will be forever grateful that Child Crisis Arizona was there for me,” he said. “They made me feel loved and that I mattered.”

Last year, Child Crisis Arizona provided parenting workshops and classes for more than 1,500 parents in the community. Carlene Palmer shared how those services made her a stronger mom as she raises four children, one of whom is terminally ill.

As Child Crisis Arizona embarks on its fifth decade of service to our community, the agency is focused on strengthening families, building community and saving children to ensure its vision of “Safe Kids…Strong Families.”

“We are touched on a regular basis to witness the courage and resilience of the families we serve,” said Torrie Taj. “As an organization, we will continue to grow our services to bring hope to more children and families, and help them shape and reshape their traumatic life stories into tales of triumph.”