Bacon Street Youth and Family Services will kick off its 45th year serving the community with the organization's first fundraising gala and awards celebration on Feb. 21.
"An Evening for Bacon Street" celebrates young people living substance-free lives, while fundraising for an organization that helps youth reach that point.
"I think there's oftentimes a perception that young people are making risky choices on a regular basis," said executive director Kim Dellinger. "There are plenty of young people out there who are leading healthy, substance-free lives … It's important to celebrate and promote that fact."
"Our young people are doing amazing things," she said.
Founded in 1971, Bacon Street Youth and Family Services serves young people affected by substance use, substance abuse and mental health disorders up to age 26. In 2015, the organization served 273 clients and their surrounding families throughout Williamsburg, James City County, York County and Poquoson.
Bacon Street mainly offers clinical services, but Dellinger said the organization is working to build a prevention program.
"We need to help young people make a good choice to begin with," she said.
Funds raised will benefit Bacon Street's services, including development of the prevention program.
A silent auction starts the evening. Guests can bid on nearly 50 items, while they are serenaded by a musical quartet from Warhill High School. Later in the evening, items up for a live auction include a 2015 Yamaha Moped Scooter, a stay in Hershey, Pa., Park Hopper tickets to Disneyworld and more.
Williamsburg-James City County Commonwealth's Attorney Nathan Green will serve as master of ceremonies during a three-course dinner and awards presentation.
Awards will recognize three area high school students, nominated by school faculty and staff as substance-free role models and leaders in their schools. The ceremony will also recognize an adult community member for contributions to the youth and families served by Bacon Street, as well as past board members.
"It's an opportunity for us to do some recognition of the youth in our community, and also to celebrate the adults and folks who have brought us to this point," Dellinger said.
For more information, visit baconstreet.org.
Bridges can be reached by phone at 757-275-4934.
Want to go?
When: 5:30 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 21
Where: James River Ballroom, Kingsmill Resort, 1010 Kingsmill Road
Tickets: $75; purchased by calling 253-0111, visiting 247 McLaws Circle or online at tinyurl.com/baconst