Third Annual Gala Raises over $250,000 for Military Families

 Project Sanctuary’s Third Annual Gala Raises over $250,000 for Military Families
-Event attracts nearly 300 guests from around the country-

 Granby, CO (May 24, 2018) – Project Sanctuary, a nonprofit providing hope and healing for thousands of military families across the country, raised over $250,000 at its third annual gala, held May 18 at Colorado University South Denver Campus. The Operation Project Sanctuary (O.P.S.) Gala, presented by Aimco Cares and First Command Financial Services, drew nearly 300 guests from around the country.

“We are so grateful to know that our supporters also believe in walking alongside our military families, giving them the support and tools needed to thrive. In partnership, we are creating a safe place for our families to heal together,” said Project Sanctuary founder and CEO Heather Ehle.

The money raised from the gala will allow Project Sanctuary to fund the participation of 83 families in its two-year program. The organization currently has a waitlist of 2,200 families seeking services. In addition to providing family retreats and follow-up services, Project Sanctuary is on the second cohort of the Walton’s Warriors peer-to-peer mentoring program aimed at improving quality of life for veterans and, ultimately, reducing suicides. The year-long training program is designed to equip veterans with the skills needed to provide support to fellow veterans struggling with such issues as reintegration into civilian life.

Heather Ehle, Michael Harville, and Neil Pappas

At the gala, Walton’s Warriors coach Neil Pappas was honored with the Knights of Valor Award for his service as a peer mentor. Family retreat graduates Joshua Deeds and the Galloway family gave heartfelt testimonies about their Project Sanctuary experience and how it has given them hope.

In addition to Aimco Cares and First Command Financial Services, sponsorship by Davey Coach Sales Inc., PDC Energy, ATBS, Dynamic Mortgage Concepts, iHeart Radio, Monfort Family Foundation, Fox31 Denver, and Vitalitas Denver Ketamine Infusion Center covered all of the event’s costs, allowing Project Sanctuary to devote all funds raised on event night to support its programs.

Project Sanctuary focuses on strengthening military families during the stressful times of deployment, transition and reintegration, offering retreats nationwide. In 2018, the organization will offer 30 retreats to serve military families and will also continue outreach to the 2,200 families on its wait list to provide pre-retreat assessment and crisis intervention. Project Sanctuary uses the A.R.T. model – Assess (pre-retreat support services), Reconnect (six-day therapeutic retreat for the whole family), and Thrive (two years of follow-up services). The program is unique in its treatment of the family as a unit while also working with each family member individually to assess their needs. The overall goal is easing the reconnection of families previously distanced as a result of deployment and military service, including resultant injuries.

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