How Local Businesses Fuel Virginia Mason Events

Silent auctions have always been a favorite part of Swirl and Dreambuilders, our annual fundraisers for Bailey-Boushay House (BBH) and Virginia Mason. For years, local businesses have generously supported these auctions by donating items like event tickets and fine wines. Even in the face of the pandemic, many of our business partners continued to support our organization. We are so grateful.

“We have a deep, personal respect for the caregivers at Bailey-Boushay House as they have helped so many of our loved ones and their families during the most difficult of times,” said Joe Fugere, owner and founder of Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria, who has generously donated gift certificates to his restaurant at BBH’s fundraising events since 2006. “Supporting Swirl is a way to honor those whom we have lost and those who have lovingly cared for them. Thank you, Swirl!”

Throughout the pandemic, our events have been virtual. But our community’s support has stayed strong. In past years, we’ve received donations from businesses across the city, ranging from food, to wine to all-expenses-paid getaways. While some services like travel and sports events weren’t happening during the pandemic, auction items like a boat ride from Hot Tub Boats, a gift basket of pet treats and toys from All the Best Pet Care and a freshly baked pie from A la Mode raised money for our causes through highly competitive bidding.

When community members donate these items, the proceeds from auctioning them off benefit various programs across our organization. Bidding on items and knowing proceeds will fuel vital care is a highlight of the event for many participants, like Meeko Garcia and Andrew Funk.

“The mission of BBH is something we find incredibly valuable in our community,” they shared. “HIV/AIDS disproportionately affects the LGBTQ+ and minority communities. We are committed to giving everyone the care and the dignity they deserve and help them through hard times or end-of-life care.”

While we weren’t able to hold a silent or wine auction during Dreambuilders 2020, we’re excited to have them back in 2021. We already have some great auction items, like generous gift packages from The Fairmont Olympic Hotel.

“We support Virginia Mason through Dreambuilders every year,” says Renee Wigner from the Fairmont Olympic Hotel. “We are impressed with their desire to provide high-quality healthcare and their desire to serve the community as a whole.”

To ensure the highest level of safety for our community, Swirl and Dreambuilders will be virtual in 2021. But we look forward to gathering in person for future events.

“We’re so grateful for our community — from the businesses that generously donate items to our loyal event participants,” says Virginia Mason Foundation Events Director Eileen Harte. “We look forward to future gatherings when we can finally all come together again,”

Learn more about Virginia Mason events in 2021: VirginiaMasonFoundation.org/events

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