Mothers for Others annual benefit a huge success

From left, Stephen Graves, Sophie Pelletier-Martinelli and Tess Hollander shared a moment at the event.

From left, Stephen Graves, Sophie Pelletier-Martinelli and Tess Hollander shared a moment at the event.

Mothers for Others (MFO) held their second annual Cocktails Under the Stars benefit at the Samuel Owen Gallery rooftop deck on Sept. 19.

More than 100 attendees — volunteers, sponsors, guests and community leaders — viewed the inspiring sunset while enjoying delectable hors d’oeuvres donated by Morello Italian Bistro and sipped fine wines from Empire Merchants and Greenwich Wine and Spirit.

“We are so grateful to have such a generous and supportive community here in Greenwich,” said MFO founder Karen Giannuzzi. Low-income Connecticut families have been hardest hit by the recession according to a new CT Voices research study, childhood poverty in major Connecticut cities ranged from 6.9% in Norwalk to 47.6% in Hartford.

Ms. Giannuzzi added, “We need to collectively support these vulnerable families.”

For the past three years, Ms. Giannuzzi and her dedicated volunteers — dozen of local moms have been collecting, sorting, and distributing gently used baby equipment, toys, books and children’s clothing to needy families in our community.

The recipient families (clients) are identified by local social service agencies — including Greenwich Social Services, Family Centers, YWCA Domestic Abuse Services and Kids in Crisis.

The families are provided a shopping experience with an appointment through their caseworkers to meet with a team of MFO volunteers to select essential childcare items.

Mothers for Others collects gently used baby equipment, toys, books and children’s clothing (sizes 0 to 16 years) and redistributes the items to needy families in our community. The recipient families, identified by local social service agencies, are provided a dignified “shopping experience” by appointment with a MFO volunteer to select essential childcare items.

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