Holiday Launch Event Sets Platform for United Way

The Holiday Cheers and Beers Extravaganza went underway at the Walkerville Brewery Dec. 4. [Photo by // Hani Yassine]

by Hani Yassine
The Lance – Arts Editor

It was an evening of live music, hors d’oeuvres, and perhaps above all else, craft beer.

The Holiday Cheers and Beers event was under full swing at the Walkerville Brewery Dec.4. As an annual event with a different spin to it, it served as a launch for the brewery’s latest holiday beer, the Doppelbock Dark Winter Lager. An additional element included the release of two liter and 500ml bottles carrying the beer, generally leading to an easy-going evening to jumpstart both the weekend and the holidays.

“It’s our big signature event we do at the brewery,” said event manager Natalie Lahoub. “We have hors d’oeuvres, we have entertainment, we have great beer so it’s just a fun night.”

The proceeds from the event went towards the emergency assistance fun for the Windsor-Essex chapter of the United Way Centraide. According to donor relations vice-president Ilona Schentag, United Way carries a laser focus on mitigating poverty for families and children within numerous pockets across Windsor and Essex County.

“We have one of the highest levels of poverty of those living in low income neighborhoods in all of Canada, and over 23,000 of our kids are currently living in poverty,” Schentag said. “United Way really works in helping the community fund wrap around the services through our funded partners to make sure the most vulnerable families in our community have everything that they need.”

The emergency assistance fund is looked at as a last resort measure for low-income families who may be dealing with a type of financial setback. With a mandate on providing financial and educational support for those who need it, United Way hopes to spread its local outreach further. By doing so, they’ve collaborated with schools such as the University of Windsor to make the objective closer to a reality by minimizing the level of poverty for children in the region.

“It’s really targeted towards not just mitigating poverty, but putting an end to inter-generational poverty by lifting those children,” said Missy Sauro, United Way youth relationship manager and UWindsor social work graduate.

Sauro said United Way is currently seeking volunteers and encourages students to join the effort. Opportunities to volunteer can be located through the student group We Students United, which can be found on Facebook, Twitter and Weareunited.com.

John Alvarez makes some sushi at the Holiday Cheers and Beers at the Walkerville Brewery Dec. 4. [Photo by // Hani Yassine]

John Alvarez prepares some sushi at the Holiday Cheers and Beers at the Walkerville Brewery Dec. 4.
[Photo by // Hani Yassine]

Ilona Schentag speaks about United Way's emergency assistance fund at the Walkerville Brewery Dec. 4. [Photo by // Hani Yassine]

Ilona Schentag speaks about United Way’s emergency assistance fund at the Walkerville Brewery Dec. 4.
[Photo by // Hani Yassine]

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