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Turning Points Celebrates 20 Years of Service to the Community with Miracles on 17th Avenue West
The Miracles on 17th Avenue West dinner was held on Tuesday, December 1 at 6 p.m. at the IMG Academy Golf Club at 4350 El Conquistador Pkwy, Bradenton, FL 34210.
Miracles take many shapes, and seem to abound this time of year. But friends and supporters of Turning Points celebrated the miracles that happen every day on 17th Avenue West at the Manatee County homelessness prevention group’s end-of-the-year fundraising dinner on Dec. 1st at IMG Academy Golf Club. This year’s dinner was exceptionally special and important because Turning Points is also celebrating 20 years of service to the community!
A veteran living on the streets finds work. A family about to lose its home gets financial help. A debilitating toothache is cured for somebody who had never before had access to a dentist. Each successful outreach by the volunteers and staff of Turning Points can be the starting point of a new life for its clients, but also a blessing for an entire community benefiting from fewer homeless on the streets.
“We see miracles happen every day” at Turning Points’ Bill Galvano One Stop Center on 17th Ave. West, next to McKechnie Field, says Executive Director Adell Erozer. “But only because of the support we get from our volunteers and donors that any of it possible.”
The Miracles on 17th Avenue West event provides critically needed operating funds to help Turning Points keep up with demand for its services, which range from basic needs like showers and haircuts to rental assistance to medical care. In the past decade, the organization has grown from two employees with an annual budget of under $200,000 to one with $1.7 million in operating costs, a staff of 17 and more than 160 active volunteers who serve as many as 9,600 clients per year.
Volunteers make many of Turning Points services possible, but rising costs are a challenge, Erozer says. The dental clinic, which performs a variety of procedures for eligible patients, is perhaps the most expensive service area. “A set of dentures costs around $280, and we provide 15 to 18 sets each month,” she says. “It’s costly, but the difference it makes in quality of life and employability for the patients is huge. Some of them would call it a miracle.”
About Turning Points
Turning Points and our Bill Galvano One Stop Center partners provide a remarkable variety of services designed to assist individuals and families on their path to financial stability and independence. Turning Points is the one stop shop for preventing and ending homelessness in our community. We provide day resource services (such as hot showers, laundry services, clothing, food), employment services, rental and utility assistance, veteran’s services (employment, housing and childcare), and free medical and dental care for the uninsured and underinsured. A total of 9,645 people received help last year with critical services targeted to the essential needs of people in crisis. Turning Points can only provide this high standard of service because of our caring, compassionate volunteers and strong community support.
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