A night of success in Greenville as the Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh Tar River Regional Office team hosted their first fundraising event. The fundraiser, “Caring for Our Community: A Night Celebrating Service to Our Neighbors,” was held at St. Peter Catholic Church in Greenville on Saturday, March 2. The evening highlighted the generosity and commitment of Catholic Charities friends, volunteers, and donors.

Chair of the Tar River Deanery Resource Committee and volunteer, Mark Dellasega, welcomed guests to the event, setting the stage for an evening of inspiration and giving. Dellasega shared a personal story about once not knowing whe re the Tar River Regional Office was located. So, he took the opportunity to map the 1746 Union Street address on the big screen. Dellasega said knowing where the office is makes it easier to get involved, donate, volunteer, or tell someone in crisis about Catholic Charities programs and its Mission of Providing Help and Creating Hope. That message was echoed by Reverend Romen A. Acero, Pastor at St. Gabriel Catholic Church, as he bestowed a heartfelt blessing upon the gathering, fostering a sense of unity and purpose.

Tar River Regional Director Liz McDowell then extended a huge hello and thank you to the phenomenal friends, generous donors, dedicated volunteers, and hardworking staff who made the event a success, raising $10,000 before the night even began.

A highlight of the evening came when volunteer and Catholic Charities Board of Directors member Rudy Kellerman issued a challenge and got a big response. Kellerman asked those attending to help reach the event goal of $15,000, and collectively they raised an additional $5,000 to achieve it.

Another highlight of the night was the uplifting success story of Candiss Moore. She shared her gratitude for the support received last year, emphasizing how the assistance from Catholic Charities allowed her family to overcome challenges. Now, Candiss and her family are giving back to Catholic Charities through their lawncare business.

Candiss Moore said, “Catholic Charities was there to help with nutritious food to help feed my family when we were going through tough times. They also gave us clothing that really helped as well. We’re thankful they were there to help us until we could get back on our feet. We’re now able to give back to Catholic Charities because we started a lawncare business and we cut the grass at the office.”

Moore’s story was a testament to how donations are being used and how the help goes back into supporting the community.

Tar River Regional staff members extend a heartfelt thank you to event sponsors, Margie and Mark Dellasega, as well as silver sponsors Mitzi and Rudy Kellerman, and Maria & Rob Maloney. Gold sponsors Monica & Michael Carlson, Margaret & Paul Gemperline, Jean & Steve Merenda, and table sponsors whose contributions helped make for an extraordinary evening.

Catholic Charities leaders say the night’s success wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless efforts of the Tar River Deanery Resource Committee. They recognized the committee and the incredible student volunteers from John Paul II Catholic High School, led by volunteer and theology teacher Sylvia Tulis. From ushering guests to serving refreshments, their dedication ensured the evening ran seamlessly.

Tar River Regional Director Liz McDowell described the event as “amazing” with “incredible people who recognize the needs in our community.” The funds raised will continue to make a meaningful impact, providing essentials to those in need. Thank you to all who contributed to this unforgettable evening.