In what amounts to the club's largest single donation to date, the Rotary Club of Sudbury Sunrisers made a $117,000 contribution to the Janis Foligno Foundation (JFF) on July 31.
Kate Furlotte, past president of the Rotary Club of Sudbury Sunrisers, presented the JFF with the donation at the Lady of Lourdes Shrine (also known as the Grotto) on a sunny Wednesday afternoon. The contribution represents the proceeds of the club's Paul Harris Fellowship event held June 27 at the Caruso Club.
Not only did the club posthumously present Janis Foligno with a Paul Harris Fellowship, but also fundraised on its behalf through a silent auction and raffle for a 2013 Chevrolet Spark, donated by Vince Pollesel of Crosstown Chevrolet and Joe Giacomin of Martin Chevrolet in California (Janis Foligno's brother).
JFF CEO Mike Foligno, husband of the late Janis Foligno, accepted the cheque on behalf of the JFF.
“The Rotary's Paul Harris Fellowship Award presentation to Janis is very special because it acknowledges and honours the compassion Janis had for others and the unselfish ways in which she chose to live her life,” said Foligno. “It was a special night, bringing almost 500 gracious and generous people together in one room to honour Janis and … support the Janis Foligno Foundation.”
The JFF was created in memory of Janis Foligno, who passed away from breast cancer in July, 2009. Funds raised by the foundation support various charities, including the Sudbury Regional Hospital Foundation's Breast Cancer Equipment Fund, the Maison Vale Hospice, Meals on Wheels and the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), Ican Independence Centre & Network in Sudbury and the House of Kin- Relief for Cancer families.
“This was an unforgettable experience;” said Furlotte, “Change and progress are possible when you have passion and commitment to making the world a better place. Janis made this world a better place and will continue to do that thanks to the overwhelming generosity of this community.”
Plans for next year’s JFF Sudbury fundraiser are already in the works, but Beau Frescura, who chaired the 2013 event, says it will be hard to top this year's.
“Everything about this event was positive,” said Frescura. “The message the Foligno family wanted to convey was one of hope, and by all accounts, that’s what everyone who attended walked away with. If we can show people that they’re actually making a difference with their donations, we can keep the momentum going.”
Donations to the Janis Foligno Foundation can be made through the Rotary Sudbury Sunrisers, or directly to the Foundation by visiting janisfolignofoundation.com or janisfolignofoundation.ca.