16th Annual Friends Dinner

Thanks to everyone who attended our 16th Annual Friends Dinner! With 168 in attendance, it was one of our biggest dinners yet!

The night began with bidding wars in our silent auction. Thanks to so many generous sponsors, we had 40 items to auction off this year! Items ranged from a gorgeous chair to custom made quilts, reading pillows, cutting boards, ornaments, and art, to gift certificates for getaways, restaurant gift cards, sports tickets and memorabilia, and so much more!

After announcing winners, our presentation began with our Director of Counseling, Krista. She offered a beautiful visual on the impact of counseling of just one client on West Michigan as a whole. She explained that counseling improves more that just the lives of an individual client; it also impacts the client’s family, friends, coworkers, church community, neighborhood, law enforcement, government officials, and city. Asking tables to stand to represent each of the groups, we quickly saw how deep the scoop of our ministry reaches.

Following Krista, Jim Liske, the Global Director of Movement.org, brought that impact a step closer to home, sharing that, statistically, 50% of the individuals in the room currently or in the past have been involved in some form of counseling. He encouraged attendees to reflect on how they themselves or a loved one have been impacted by counseling. He shared that, as a pastor, he was grateful for the trained professionals we available to help his congregation with needs beyond his training; he compared his pastoral role to that of a life guard rescuing a drowning person, while counselors act as the paramedics giving the continual care that’s needed. He shared how grateful he was that Beacon offered such continual care at no cost, helping individuals who otherwise may not receive help. He then challenged the audience to get involved, to be the change that they wish to see. With $400 covering the cost of counseling for one client, he asked how many clients the audience would support through Beacon’s ministry.

And we praise God for how He’s provided through this event! Currently, this event has raised $30,174 (and we continue to receive donations in the mail). Through the Friends Dinner alone, we’re able to provide no cost counseling to 75 people. How will you empower our community by supporting no cost counseling? How will you stand in the gap and help your sister, brother, neighbor, or child receive the care that they need?

Sharon is a jack of all trades a Beacon. In addition to doing play therapy and seeing clients, she also supervises interns and heads up our communications. In her free time, you’ll find Sharon running all of the miles, baking treats, and tracking down corny jokes.


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