PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) —Phones never stopped ringing and local businesses came out in droves to support the cause on Saturday night, as the 38th Annual Meeting Street Telethon raised more than $830,000 for the Providence-based organization.
The Telethon, held at the Meeting Street School on Eddy Street in Providence, aims to raise funds to benefit local families and help the organization achieve its mission of “getting the best out of every child.” After four hours of accepting individual and corporate donations, Meeting Street raised $831,050.
Part of the four-hour special event was an online auction, in which items such as signed sports memorabilia, packages to local restaurants and vacation getaways were sold to the highest bidders. The auction ultimately raised more than $20,000 during the telethon.
This year, the special event was sponsored by Cardi’s Furniture and WPRI 12, and it was hosted by Eyewitness News personalities Mike Montecalvo, Tony Petrarca, Shannon Hegy and Steve Nielsen.
Danielle North, Patrick Little, Michaela Johnson, Will Gilbert and Brendan Kirby were special guests, and several elected officials – including Mayors Allan Fung (Cranston), Angel Taveras (Providence), James Diossa (Central Falls), Donald Grebien (Pawtucket), Charles Lombardi (North Providence); General Treasurer Gina Raimondo; House Speaker Gordon Fox and Reps. Scott Slater and Joe Almeida; Superintendent Susan Lusi; and Providence city Councilwoman Sabina Matos and Council President Michael Solomon – volunteered their time and took calls in the phone bank.
“Meeting Street holds a special place in the hearts of our entire crew here at the station and with all of Rhode Island. The faculty is truly amazing and the facility is like nothing else anywhere in the country. It is a gem in our state….but most of all, it’s the kids. They make every moment of this night worth it. We are so proud to be affiliated with Meeting Street and associated with all of the sponsors that have contributed to this institution. Thank you Meeting Street for making our state and this world a better place,” WPRI 12 & FOX Providence President & General Manager Patrick Wholey was quoted as the special event drew to a close.
Meeting Street describes itself as a place where infants, preschoolers and children of all ages receive individual attention from highly trained educators. Its mission is to “compassionately and innovatively empower children and their families to thrive by fostering the development of the whole child.”