Breakfast fundraiser raises more than half a million for local youth

March 31, 2014 by  

Earlier this month, the Youth Eastside Services (YES) outdid themselves in their fundraising efforts with the year’s Invest in Youth breakfast.

The annual event, held on March 12, garnered in excess of $610,000. The keynote speech was given by Brandi Carlile, a singer-songwriter at the downtown Bellevue Hyatt-Regency.

During this time of increasing homelessness and drug abuse, YES’ resources are more in demand than ever, according to Patti Skelton-McGougan, its director. She continued in her opening statement to say that adults aged 18 to 21, more than ever before, were looking for treatment for addiction to alcohol, heroin, and methamphetamine.

The central topic of the breakfast, however, was the organization’s work with children who have been abused or bullied, as well as recognizing the early signs that a suicide may be imminent. Guest speakers included former clients and their mentors who explained how they learned the coping skills necessary from YES.

According to Skelton-McGougan, suicidal thoughts and self-harm appear to be on the rise. She noted, in the past year dialectical behavioral therapy, which combines the acceptance and mindfulness of Buddhism with traditional cognitive behavioral therapy has been incorporated into YES’s approach to these issues.

With the help of brochure printers, groups like YES can spread the word about their programs, while also possibly raising their fundraising capability.