“Doing good for others is good for the soul,” says Lake Bluff’s Sally Stoll, a long-time member of the Women’s Board of Catholic Charities Lake County Services and the honorary co-chair with her husband Dr. Ralph Stoll for this year’s annual Art of Caring fundraiser. “We support Catholic Charities because in this community we are very lucky to have all that we do. I believe it’s within our power, our duty, and our privilege to do something for others—because we can.”
Twenty-eight years ago, a small group of women from Lake Forest and Lake Bluff formed a partnership with Catholic Charities and started the first Women’s Board to help the neediest in Lake County. Their mission was and continues to be three-fold: to raise funds for Catholic Charities programs and services in Lake County, to increase awareness of their work within the Archdiocese of Chicago, and to provide volunteer opportunities to those who seek them. Since its inception, the Women’s Board has raised $5.1 million.
“I’m not sure that people understand that you don’t have to be Catholic to receive help from Catholic Charites,” says Ralph. “Catholic Charities Lake Country Services helps anyone locally in need, regardless of their religious affiliation.”
The Women’s Board of Catholic Charities Lake County Services, a true hands-on, working board supports a number of Catholic Charities programs making a difference in Lake County, including the organization’s Family Self-Sufficiency Program—which helps single-parent families who are trying to move forward and become as independent as possible and the Catholic Charities Samaritan Hope Program for homeless mothers and their children who need a safer, more stable environment. Catholic Charities assists more than 56,000 people annually in Lake County through all of its programs, including emergency services, Meals on Wheels, senior outreach, counseling, a food pantry, and the Lake County Diaper Depot. Catholic Charities is best known in the area for its Christmas Giving program, where the board collects and distributes thousands of presents to the needy in Lake County.
“Catholic Charities of Lake County is part of the larger Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago, but Lake County alone serves more than 56,000 people each year,” says Lake Forest’s Jan Elwart, president of the Women’s Board. “We provide services that span everything from maternity and adoption care to assistance for seniors and veterans. It’s truly an amazing organization, and it’s so exciting to see women who want to share in the commitment to what Catholic Charities is doing.” This year, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago is celebrating 100 years since it was founded.
“Lights, Camera, Caring!” is in store for the 28th annual Art of Caring event being held on Saturday, May 13 at the Genesee Theatre in Waukegan. The cost of tickets is $250 per person. The evening will take full advantage of the unique venue and the beautifully restored theater with live entertainment that will delight the guests as they dine on the theater’s expansive stage. Froggy’s French Café will cater the gourmet dinner. There will be a $5,000 cash raffle drawing (winner need not be present to win), a live auction, and a paddle raise. This year’s Art of Caring promises to be an evening guests won’t soon forget.
“The quality of the women on this board is just fantastic,” Sally says. “They’re all compassionate, caring, and dedicated to the mission. I’m so proud to be part of this group and all that they have accomplished.”
For tickets and information, visit catholiccharities.net/artofcaring, or contact Karen Daniels at 847-782-4115.