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Earlier this month, the Glen T. MacLeod Cape Ann YMCA in Gloucester, was transformed into a spectacular event venue for the YMCA of the North Shore’s annual gala, The Wanderlust Ball. Some 400 North Shore residents attended the event, which capped off a fundraising campaign that collected $1.9 million to support a new mental health initiative and other services.

“Being able to bring people together in person after three years was wonderful,” says Marge Cregg, Chief Advancement Officer for YMCA of the North Shore. “The energy and excitement in the room was palpable.”

Much of the money raised will go to support the YMCA of the North Shore’s new mental wellness initiative called ONEDoor, A Path to Mental Wellness. The new program will broaden and elevate the scope of mental health and wellness resources available across the 25 towns the regional organization serves.

The event’s honorary co-chairs Kristine Trustey and Sean McGraw made the largest single gift in the amount of $1.5 million, of which $500,000 will be available to fund the ONEDoor Program in its first year. Gala guests donated an additional $650,000 to this initiative which, added to pre-event fundraising, made a grand total of $1.9 million raised, the most ever for the Y’s annual gala.

“We are so grateful to our gala Honorary Chairs, Kristine Trustey and Sean McGraw, who have led the charge in helping us launch this transformative program for children, adults, and families,” YMCA of the North Shore CEO Chris Lovasco says. “With the addition of an experienced leader in the mental wellness space, coupled with our dedicated team of staff members already focused on mental health, we are positioned to deepen our long standing commitment to mental wellness and meet this need like never before.”

In addition to the mental wellness initiative, this funding will help the Y support the ever-growing and diverse needs of individuals, families, and children across the North Shore and southern New Hampshire.

The YMCA of the North Shore serves more than 40,000 members and program participants, running seven locations from Marblehead to Plaistow, New Hampshire, as well as affordable housing developments throughout the region. We nurture the potential of children and teens, improve health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support our neighbors, regardless of age, race, ethnicity or socio-economic background.