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SRQ DAILY Feb 12, 2020

Wednesday Philanthropy Edition

Wednesday Philanthropy Edition

"As a mother and huge advocate for children, I just can't imagine what a family goes through with a life-threatening illness and a wish that may not come true."

- -Terri Klauber, Make-A-Wish Southern Florida

[Community]  Three Local Women Continue to Make Childrens' Wishes Come True With Cooking For Wishes Event
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

Sarasota trio: Terri Klauber, Renee Phinney and Kara Saunders band together again as co-chairs of an anticipatory fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation - Southern Florida, Suncoast Regional chapter. Celebrating its 10th year, “Cooking for Wishes” has generated nearly $600,000 for the nonprofit in the last two years—enough to grant 75 life-changing wishes for critically-ill children on the Suncoast. Always hosted at Michael’s on East, Cooking for Wishes invites guests to a fundraising lunch, but not just to sit down and be served. This interactive luncheon gets guests up out of their seats to learn how to prepare a four-course meal for their table. The luncheon is led under the direction of Executive Chef Jamil Piñeda of Michael’s on East, who created a special menu themed around the circus. Centered around a fun, festive theme each year, this year’s “Circus Spectacular” partnered with The Circus Arts Conservatory for an already sold-out event. 

With ticket sales and live auction proceeds underwriting the cost of granting life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses, guests attending Cooking for Wishes on February 20, can expect a visit from the Peacocks, a local family willing to share their story to the public. The Peacocks recently returned from a Disney cruise—a wish which was granted to their daughter Kinsley, a six-year-old pediatric cancer survivor. Upon having to have an eye removed to become cancer-free, Kinsley is now a nonprofit founder herself, selling cookies out of her cookie cart to raise money for fellow kids with cancer. She will be speaking at the luncheon about her experience with Make-A-Wish Southern Florida. 

But Kinsley’s trip to Disney is just one of the 12,000 life-changing wishes, since 1983, that Make-A-Wish Southern Florida has granted—at no cost or obligation to the families. “We really try and bring people in the room that care about children, that want to make a real difference in their lives," says Saunders. “We want the community to know there are many children with serious medical conditions and illnesses that need our help."  As the self-proclaimed “OG,” Klauber has been around since the very start of the chapter’s initiation. “I fell in love with the organization; it’s very close to my heart,” she says. “As a mother myself, and huge advocate for children, I just can’t imagine what a family goes through with a life-threatening illness and a wish that may not come true.”

Luckily, Phinney notes this luncheon has gained significant traction and momentum over the years. “It’s incredible when families are willing to spread awareness themselves by highlighting the impact," she says. “Their stories and memories keep the perpetual emotion going to help others stay positive, strong and happy.” The other women agree. “These wish experiences are more than nice,” Klauber says, “They’re necessary in supporting the health and well-being of families at a critical time in their lives.” 

The Southern Florida chapter’s territory includes 22 counties/four regions: the Suncoast (Sarasota, Manatee and surrounding counties), Tampa Bay, southeast and southwest Florida. It also includes the U.S. Virgin Islands. 

Pictured from left to right: Renee Phinney, Terri Klauber and Kara Saunders.

Learn more about Make-A-Wish Southern Florida, 3430 Magic Oak Lane, Sarasota, 941-378-9474,

[Sunshine From Darkness]  Mental Health ... It Matters!

After a nine-year hiatus and with funding from the Lee and Bob Peterson Foundation, Sunshine from Darkness returns to present the Journey to Wellness Symposium and Inspiring Hope Dinner, at 8:45 am and 6:30 pm, respectively, on Saturday, March 14.

More than 45,000 people die annually by suicide; it is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. for all ages. One in 25 adults in the U.S. has a serious mental illness that limits or interferes with major life activities. Depression alone leads to 51 billion dollars in lost productivity per year.   

It is quite likely that you know someone with a mental health challenge whose life would be improved with better treatment and support, and less stigma. While Mental Health America ranks Florida 12th in the prevalence of mental illness, the state ranks dead last in per-person spending for mental health services. 

The free Journey to Wellness Symposium takes place at Van Wezel. The Inspiring Hope Dinner, featuring three celebrity speakers/mental health advocates, takes place at The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota. Proceeds will benefit mental health services of Coastal Behavioral Healthcare and First Step of Sarasota, and cutting-edge brain research.

For more information or registration, go to SunshinefromDarkness.org 

[SunCoast Blood Bank ]  Helping Local Cancer Patients

New donors who do not give blood frequently often do so at SunCoast Blood Bank in response to major incidents that are heavily publicized, such as the mass shootings in Las Vegas and Orlando, or devastating natural disasters such as a hurricane. “After 911, there was a line out the door. It was great how many people responded and wanted to help,” says Scott Bush, CEO of SunCoast Blood Bank. “But we shouldn’t have to have mass tragedies to feel inspired to donate. There are elderly, injured and sick people in the hospital every day that need transfusions.” Cancers, blood disorders, rare diseases, aneurysm or sustaining someone through surgery after a car accident so they don’t perish on the table, are all instances where blood transfusions save lives. “It seems everyone is impacted by cancer in some way, be it a family member, friend or co-worker,” Bush says, noting over half of SunCoast’s platelet donations are needed by patients undergoing chemotherapy. “Chemo just wipes you out. It kills the cancer cells, but it also damages the healthy cells,” says Bush. “So, we need to replace those blood products so patients can function and survive. This aspect of the need for blood is not publicized like mass tragedies, but it’s the everyday reality. Cancer strikes everyone from infants to grandparents and many would not survive without blood products. Quite simply, there is no substitute for human blood when needed for treatment.”  

Read more from the SunCoast Blood Bank BrandStory here.

[Education Foundation of Sarasota County]  FAFSA Help for Families

In 2018 alone, 661,000 graduates who were eligible for federal financial aid lost out on their share because they did not complete a form.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) can seem overwhelming, and some families incorrectly assume that they need not bother because their students would not qualify for aid.

The FAFSA is worth taking time to complete because:

  • Financial aid is not just for low-income students.
  • Many scholarships, grants and other types of merit-based awards require the FAFSA information.
  • Technical college students are eligible for financial aid; it is not limited to traditional college or university students.   

Help in completing the FAFSA is available at no charge to students and families. The Sarasota Local College Access Network is providing FAFSA open houses, with trained volunteers, on February 24, 26, and 27.  

For hours, locations and more details, visit LaunchYourPlan.com

Learn More Here

[Community]  IMPACT 100 SRQ Seeks Area Women to Join Giving Collective

Impact 100 SRQ, a group of Sarasota-Manatee women philanthropists committed to high-impact, strategic grant-making, made Impact global history by raising $228,000 during its inaugural year in 2019. This year, Jane Watt, president of Impact 100 SRQ, says the organization’s goal is to exceed last year’s benchmark by raising $500,000 by the March 1 deadline. This would translate to awarding five $100,000 transformational grants to area nonprofits for its 2020 giving year. According to Watt, women throughout Sarasota and Manatee counties are joining forces to collectively fund transformational grants to nonprofits in Sarasota and Manatee counties. The grants they award are distributed in minimum increments of $100,000 each. In its 2019 founding year, Impact 100 SRQ awarded two transformational grants of $114,000 each to The Haven and Mothers Helping Mothers.

“Our goal is to increase membership to 500 by the 2020 membership enrollment deadline of March 1,” says Watt, adding that the initiative’s motto is “Fund All 5.” “We aim to award at least one grant in each of the five focus areas: arts and culture; education; environment and recreation; health and wellness; and family.” Who should consider joining? “We are women from all walks of life, united for a greater good, with a clear understanding of the power of collective giving,” says Watt. “We welcome like-minded women who want to give back to their communities—and change the face of philanthropy in our area.” The Impact 100 SRQ model is simple: Encourage 100 women to donate $1,000 each, and then pool those resources into one large grant of $100,000 to be awarded to qualifying nonprofits in Sarasota and Manatee counties. Impact 100 SRQ is hosting several upcoming events for women interested in becoming a 2020 member and friends who want to support the local chapter’s efforts. 

Jane Watt, President of Impact 100 SRQ

Learn more about joining and check out a complete list of upcoming member events.

[Awards]  Big Brothers Big Sisters Of The Sun Coast Announces 2019 Big Brother & Big Sister Of The Year

It was recently announced Ms. Victoria Phillips and Mr. David Rengifo have been selected as the 2019 Big Brother & Big Sister of the Year. It is a thrill and honor to have Victoria and David represent the organization as the Big Brother and Big Sister of the Year. “Sama and I are lucky to have found each other. Our friendship has been mutually beneficial, and more emotionally impactful than I could have ever imagined. I am honored to be in her life, to help her see the abilities within herself, to listen, and to give her a bigger picture of the world.  In turn, she has helped me to learn and grow and to appreciate life's differences. I am forever grateful to have been given this opportunity,” states Victoria. David met Robiel when Robiel was 12 years old. With David’s help, Robiel was able to put his life back together. He is now a high school senior on track to graduate in May. Victoria and David’s application will be submitted to Big Brothers Big Sisters Association of Florida along with other Bigs of the Year applications submitted from the agencies in Florida. The State Association’s panel of judges selects one Big Brother and one Big Sister who will represent the State of Florida. 

Pictured: Big Sister of the Year Victoria Phillips with her Little Sister Sama Younis

To learn more about the Big Brother Big Sister program

[Gala]  Goodwill and Michael's On East Present Annual Mardi Gras Gala

Goodwill Manasota and Michael’s On East invite the public to the most anticipated event of the season: the Mardi Gras Gala. This event features authentic New Orleans cuisine, open bar, live Dixieland music and dancing, an array of circus performers, fabulous live auction items, and more. This is the fifteenth anniversary of the event, which was conceived by Michael’s On East co-proprietor Philip Mancini. Guests are encouraged to wear fun and festive Mardi Gras attire and enjoy Big Easy-style drinks and dinner offerings such as Crawfish Étouffée, crab cakes, Jambalaya, Oysters Bienville, and much more. Co-chairs are Steve Altier – who was a member of the inaugural Mardi Gras committee – and Angela Forson, who are Goodwill Ambassadors – community members who have made a commitment to share the mission of Goodwill Manasota with the greater community by volunteering at events, speaking on its behalf, creating new fundraisers, and introducing Goodwill to their friends, family and colleagues. Grand Marshal Sponsor is CS&L CPAs.

Goodwill’s 2020 Mardi Gras Gala will take place on Saturday, February 29, at 6:30 pm at Michael’s On East, 1212 East Ave. South, Sarasota. Tickets are $175 per person; 100% of proceeds from the event support Goodwill’s mission of changing lives through the power of work. 

Mardi Gras Gala co-chairs Angela Forson (left) and Steve Altier with Goodwill Manasota�s mascot, Good Willy

For reservations or to learn more about sponsorship opportunities.

[Investment]  Calling All Angels
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

Turning retirees with thick investment portfolios into funders and angels for bright business ideas.


Click here to read the full story in our February 2020 Business Edition!

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Circus Sarasota Showcases The Finest International Talent in 2020 Show , February 7 – March 1, 10 am - 5 pm

Sarasota’s hometown circus, Circus Sarasota, is ready to bring chills, thrills and laughs aplenty to audiences of all ages during its professional winter show, Circus Sarasota 2020. Each year, an international cast of renowned artists is chosen to showcase the finest acts in various circus arts disciplines. Once again featuring new and innovative acts, Circus Sarasota 2020 will offer high-flying, heart-stopping thrills, laugh-out-loud comedic antics, and acts that defy both expectations and the boundaries of human limitations. This year’s show features incredible artistry on the flag pole and single trapeze, fast-paced Alanian riders on horseback, hand-to-hand acrobatics, juggling, breathtaking aerial artists, and much more! All performances are rain or shine and take place under the air-conditioned Ulla Searing Big Top in Nathan Benderson Park (behind the Mall at UTC). Showtimes are Tuesdays through Saturdays at 7 p.m., Wednesday and Saturday matinees at 2 p.m., and President’s Day (February 17) and Sundays at 1 and 5 pm. Tickets are $15-$55, with children under 2 free. Go to CircusArts.org, call the Box Office, or visit the Big Top Box Office beginning Monday, January 20, 2020 (140 UTC Dr., Sarasota) Monday through Friday from 10 am to 5 pm. When picking up tickets, please present your confirmation email or I.D.

Ulla Searing Big Top in Nathan Benderson Park, 140 UTC Dr., Sarasota

[SOON]  SPORTS: 2020 LECOM Suncoast Classic , February 10 – February 16, 8:30 AM

After the success of the inaugural LECOM Suncoast Classic, the tournament will return to the Korn Ferry Tour (previously the Web.com Tour) the week of February 10-16, 2020. Lakewood National Golf Club in Lakewood Ranch, Florida will again host the 144 professionals competing for a $600,000 purse and a chance to contend against the world’s best golfers on the PGA TOUR.

Lakewood National Golf Club, 17605 Lakewood National Parkway, Lakewood Ranch, FL 34211

[SOON]  FILM: Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child , February 13, 1:00 pm

A thoughtful portrait of a renowned artist, this documentary shines the spotlight on New York City painter Jean-Michel Basquiat. Featuring extensive interviews conducted by Basquiat's friend, filmmaker Tamra Davis, the production reveals how he dealt with being a black artist in a predominantly white field. The film also explores Basquiat's rise in the art world, which led to a close relationship with Andy Warhol, and looks at how the young painter coped with acclaim, scrutiny and fame

Historic Asolo Theatre at the Ringling , 5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota

[SOON]  FILM: A Ballerina's Tale , February 14, 1:00 pm & 6:30 pm

Few dancers reach the elite level of ballet; of that already small number only a fraction are black women. Misty Copeland shattered those barriers in 2015, making history as the first African-American principal dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre (ABT). A Ballerina’s Tale intimately documents Copeland’s historic rise while shining a light on the absence of women of color at major ballet companies. The film also explores how ballet’s emphasis on waifish bodies impacts the health of ballerinas while sending a negative message to young fans.

Historic Asolo Theatre at the Ringling , 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota,

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Syd Solomon: Concealed and Revealed Symposium , February 14, 10:00 am

The Ringling will convene a symposium to celebrate the legacy of Syd Solomon. Attendees will be able to learn more about Syd’s life, early influences, long relationship with the Ringling Museum, the importance of ecology in his work, and his famed home/studio at Midnight Pass. The day of talks will begin at 10:00 and will culminate in a reception during which participants can meet the speakers and spend time in the exhibition of Solomon’s work, Concealed and Revealed. Speakers include Mike Solomon, the artist’s son, Art historian Dr. Gail Levin, Architect Max Strang, Scientist Karen Willey, and Curators Michael Auping and Ola Wlusek. Tickets are $25/ $15 for members/ $5 for teachers. Ticket price includes the entire day of talks and a concluding reception. 

The John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art, 5401 Bay Shore Rd., Sarasota

[SOON]  THEATER: The World’s Most Celebrated Love Story Comes To The Stage of The Historic Sarasota Opera House on Valentine’s Weekend , February 15, 7:30 pm

Charles Gounod’s opera Romeo & Juliet will open Valentines day weekend. Set in 14th-century Verona, the deep love between Romeo and Juliet rivals the longstanding feud between their families, the Montagues and the Capulets. In this story — overflowing with lush melodies — the young lovers pursue their great passion to the grave. Romeo & Juliet will have nine performances through March 20, 2020. Individual tickets start at only $19 and are available at SarasotaOpera.org and the Sarasota Opera Box Office. For more information on Romeo & Juliet as well as the rest of the 2020 Winter Festival season—Puccini’s La bohème (opening February 8), Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love (opening February 22), and Catalani’s La Wally, (opening March 7)—contact the Sarasota Opera Box Office by visiting SarasotaOpera.org, call 941-328-1300, or visit the box office at 61 North Pineapple Ave., Sarasota, FL 34236.

Sarasota Opera House , 61 North Pineapple Ave., Sarasota

[SOON]  SPORTS: Love is in the Air! Fundraising Event for HSMC , February 16, 11am-4pm

Show your love for the Humane Society of Manatee County (HSMC). Watch dozens of awesome pups soar through the air during a dog dock diving competition. Enjoy an exhilarating polo match from the Sarasota Polo pavilion, the best seats in the house. Eat, drink, visit with vendors, see Search and Rescue dogs and win prizes. 100% of your ticket purchase will be donated to HSMC (after credit card fees).

The Sarasota Polo Club Pavilion, 8201 Polo Club Lane, Sarasota, FL 34240

[SOON]  SEMINAR: How To Be Better In Bed: America's Sleep Doctor Tells You How , February 17, 4:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Research strongly suggests that it is worthwhile to adopt a brain-healthy lifestyle across the lifespan. Dr. Stephanie Peabody will discuss how lifestyle impacts, for better or worse, both the structure and function of the brain and contributes to health, illness and performance. Dr. Peabody is a neuropsychologist with more than 20 years of experience as a clinician and program designer, consistently working to improve outcomes in brain health, development, aging, and performance at the individual and community level. In collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital, a Harvard Medical School Teaching Hospital, and scientists and clinicians across the Harvard campus, she is the creator and Founding Director of the Brain Health Initiative. Follow Dr. Peabody, Michael J. Breus, Ph.D. Clinical Psychologist, and Board Certified Sleep Specialist, commonly known as America's Sleep Doctor will provide the basic mechanisms of how sleep works in the brain, the importance of sleep cycles and circadian rhythms, how sleep changes as we age and how we can all accommodate these changes. In addition, he will describe how sleep deprivation (from apnea to sleeplessness) affects all aspects of brain health and neurological disease. He will give everyone several techniques to determine their personalized bedtime, help create a personalized pre-bed routine, strategies for nocturnal awakenings and how to wake  feeling refreshed and ready to meet the day.

RSVP on Eventbrite

The Grove Ballroom, 10670 Boardwalk Loop, Lakewood Ranch, 34202

[SOON]  SEMINAR: New Topics Lecture Series | The Art of Art Recovery: Recovering Stolen and Looted Works of Art , February 20, 5:30pm
A lecture with Christopher A. Marinello, CEO of Art Recovery International. Art crime is an ugly fact of art history. Fortunately, Marinello is on the case. His case studies offer a compelling glimpse at the painstaking detective work and tenacious legal wrangling that goes into recovering looted treasures. Tickets are $15. Reservations are highly recommended and can be made at ncf.edu/new-topics, or by calling the New College events hotline at 941-487-4888.

Mildred Sainer Auditorium, 5313 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota


The SRQ State of the Regional Economy luncheon and panel discussion will explore the forecast on the horizon of small business, regional economic trends and economic development. What's trending, who's innovating, why are donor-advised funds growing so rapidly and what exactly are donors looking for? The luncheon will culminate with the SRQ Localpreneur of the Year program at which we will honor the finalists and winners of the annual cometition recognizing business leaders who have forged a successful path for their entrepreneurial endeavors in our region. 

The Hyatt Regency, Sarasota , 1000 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  HEALTH: Building a Community of Hope and Healing; Addressing Trauma, Building Resilience , February 25, 6:00 pm -7:30 pm

SRQ Strong is bringing nationally-recognized trauma expert Rev. Paul Abernathy, CEO of Pittsburgh’s Neighborhood Resilience Project, to the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens’ for a community presentation, “Building a Community of Hope and Healing; Addressing Trauma, Building Resilience.” Rev. Abernathy, whose work is informed by both a personal and a collective experience of trauma, will discuss the framework he has developed in Pittsburgh’s Hill District to promote resilient and healthy neighborhoods by creating opportunities and support for residents to reach their full potential. SRQ Strong is a growing group of Sarasota County residents committed to learning about trauma and responding to its impact on our community. Its mission is to promote community-wide trauma awareness through healing, education, action and leadership; its vision is to create a community that cares for itself. 

The event is free to the public, but space is limited. Please RSVP to reserve your seat at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/89307259417 

To learn more about Rev. Paul Abernathy and his work, you can view his latest video at https://youtu.be/hstV63MVVDg.

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens Community Room, 900 South Palm Ave., Sarasota

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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