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Open Door Parent-Child Center Relies on Creative Fundraising

For 29 years, the Open Door Parent-Child Center, a non-profit agency serving Great Neck and its surrounding communities, has offered programs designed for the healthy development of very young children (infants, toddlers, 2-and-3-year-olds), who learn and play in a safe environment while their parents attend social worker-led support groups where they forge new friendships, gain confidence in their new role, and build the skills necessary to foster the all-important parent-child bond.

During previous years, Open Door was able to rely on the sponsors that had loyally supported them, supplementing that income with donations from board members  and their friends, along with annual fundraisers such as an annual spring luncheon, a winter “chill chaser,” parent-run bake sales and the like.

The current economic climate has forced the agency to institute some belt-tightening while ensuring that the original mission and the structure of the school remain the same or better. To this end, new or enhanced fundraisers, produced with the cooperation of the board, the staff and the parents, promise to supply the additional funds.

The first of these for the new school year was a dinner at Café Rustica, where the owner, Jeffrey Phillips, contributed 50 percent of the night’s tally to Open Door. So many parents and children and friends of Open Door participated that there were lines waiting for tables, making the night a huge success.

The second event will be a fun 5-K Walk-A-Thon through an interesting course in Great Neck, on Saturday, Oct. 23 (rain date Sunday, Oct. 24). Everyone Bis invited to participate. Before the walk, participants should obtain as many sponsors as possible, collect the money (tax-deductible checks in any amount to Open Door Parent/Child Center), and bring it to registration, 9 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. at the front of 80 Grace Avenue in Great Neck. Walk starts as soon as walker is registered and receives an Open Door button. Certificates and prizes will be awarded. For more information, call 466-3373, or 487-1897, or 482-3313.

The most highly anticipated event of the season will be “Hidden Treasures.” The sale itself will be held at 10 Grace Avenue in the heart of the village convenient to several parking lots, beginning with a pre-sale ($10 admission fee applicable to purchases) on Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 10 and regular sales starting Thursday, Nov. 11 through Monday, Nov. 15. Tax-deductible donations for the sale of fine or costume jewelry, collectibles, kitchen items, artwork, bric-a-brac, children’s toys and books, new and gently used children’s clothing, and any new items are gratefully accepted.  Not accepted are used linens and towels, cribs and car seats. Donations will be accepted Nov. 8 and 9 at the sales site. For people who may be relocating before that date and have donations that need to be stored, call Sharyn Schneider, Open Door’s executive vice president for special events, at 466-3373. Sharyn says this event will be the best ever because of the number and quality of donations already received.

Winter and spring fundraiser events for the benefit of Open Door will be announced at a later date.

Open Door is a multi-service non-profit agency located at 80 Grace Avenue open to Great Neck and surrounding communities, sponsored by National Council for Jewish Women, Lakeville Division, United Way and Great Neck United Community Fund. For more information, call the Center at 487-3313.