by Todd Habiger
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For the fifth consecutive year the Catholic Education Foundation’s annual Futures Art Event was a sellout. Hosted at Boulevard Brewery here, the crowd enjoyed food, drinks and entertainment by guitarist Jeff Jenkins.
With the ticket proceeds and money raised during the silent auction of professional works of art, the foundation raised enough money to fund 40 Guardian Angel scholarships.
The CEF Futures Guardian Angel Fund provides emergency scholarships for students in CEF schools whose families are facing a short-term crisis, such as a job loss or medical emergency.
“You hate for an emergency to be the thing that causes students to lose the opportunity for a Catholic education,” said Bill Kirk, executive director of CEF. “When you think about what a Catholic education does — to try to build a relationship with Christ, to allow these kids to be successful in this world and get to heaven in the next — it would be horrific if we couldn’t provide for them.”
The 2017 art event saw more than 60 works of art donated from professionals and students from CEF schools. While the professional artwork was auctioned off, the student artwork was given away as prizes at the end of the night, a particular highlight as winners rush to the student art table to claim their favorite piece of art.
Kirk said that fundraisers like the Futures Art Event are important, not just for the money, but for the awareness that they raise.
“The work of the foundation is so critically important to the whole archdiocese,” Kirk said. “It’s so important to these families to be able to have a Catholic education.”