9963075858?profile=RESIZE_400xBy Amy Woods

Two years have passed since the last Call to Heart Ball benefiting the Caridad Center, a vital Boynton Beach nonprofit providing free health care to uninsured people.
On Jan. 25, 2020, more than 330 guests filled the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa in Manalapan and raised nearly $500,000. On Jan. 29, a modest 200 will gather in the same luxurious location with coronavirus safety protocols in place.
“Hopefully, we’re still going to raise the same amount of money,” CEO Laura Kallus said.
Renamed the Essential Call to Heart Ball, the evening affair will celebrate the center’s core donors as well as its core patients.
“We wanted to focus on our essential donors who really came through for us during the pandemic,” Kallus said. “Our patients are essential workers — the ones who did not have the privilege of staying home.”
The ball also will highlight the essential nature of the largest no-cost clinic in Florida. It annually serves 5,000 of the area’s poorest people through a network of 170-plus volunteer providers.
“If the past two years have taught us anything, it’s how essential we are in the services we provide to the community,” Kallus said. “It is glaringly obvious that the way to help prevent the spread is to provide health care to those who are uninsured.”
The ball will have a cocktail reception followed by dinner, entertainment and a live auction. Dress is black-tie optional.
“We’re going to keep it as celebratory as possible,” Kallus said. “I think we all need that now.”

ABOVE RIGHT: Shahid Freeman and Caridad Center co-founder and board member Connie Berry at the 2020 ball. Photo provided

If You Go
What: Essential Call to Heart Ball
When: 6 p.m. Jan. 29
Where: Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa, 100 S. Ocean Blvd., Manalapan
Cost: $500
Information: 561-853-1638 or www.caridad.org



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