Arc of Katy annual gala supports continued programming after relocation

The Arc of Katy board member Amy Campbell, Katy Mayor Chuck Brawner, Katy ISD School Board Susan Gesoff and former Katy Mayor Don Elder pose for a photo at the gala.

The Arc of Katy board member Amy Campbell, Katy Mayor Chuck Brawner, Katy ISD School Board Susan Gesoff and former Katy Mayor Don Elder pose for a photo at the gala.

The Arc of Katy held its annual gala Friday, April 30 at the Omni Hotel West Houston to raise money to cover operational and program costs. The Arc of Katy is a nonprofit organization that provides a variety of low-cost programs to those with developmental disabilities, especially adults.

“The 2018 Annual Gala will go down as the best we’ve had in numerous ways; and, your support comes at a time when the organization needs it the most,” said Arc of Katy Board President Fred Shafer.

Shafer said more than 200 people attended the gala—a record for the nonprofit’s annual event and largest yearly fundraiser. The event also included other fundraising activities such as raffles.

Shafer said funds raised through the gala were especially necessary after Hurricane Harvey brought flooding to the Katy area last August. The Arc had operated its programs out of space donated by the YMCA, but the storm took the use of those facilities away from the organization and forced them to actively seek their own space.

After Harvey, The Arc of Katy was temporarily hosted by Kingsland Baptist Church, Shafer said. The nonprofit knew they would need to find a permanent home and signed a lease in January for space at 5819 Tenth St., Katy.

“For the first time, we at The Arc of Katy have expenses related to a building—lease payments, utility costs and such. That’s why the gala was so important to us,” Shafer said.

Funds raised at the gala will go to support maintaining this new space and offsetting costs for the social programming offered by The Arc, he said.

“We charge a tuition [of] $35 a day. Cost of operating is about $90 to $100 per day,” Shafer said.

The Arc of Katy is also supported by its members who pay a $50 fee for individuals or $100 family or patron memberships.

Shafer said volunteer opportunities are available at The Arc, especially during events like the gala or monthly events that staff take participants to such as the Houston Rodeo, sporting events or other field trips. Those interested in volunteering can visit www.thearcofkaty.org for more information.

Shafer said The Arc, which was started by parents and Katy ISD staff almost 30 years ago, appreciates the community’s support.

“It just goes back to the heart of the Katy community,” Shafer said. “There are a lot of people out there who want to give to us and who support us, and we appreciate that.”
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