Palm Beach County Mayor Paulette Burdick will host the Mayor’s Ball on Saturday, April 1 at the Palm Beach County Convention Center as part of an effort to make housing issues the top priority during her year-long term.
The annual gala raises awareness and funds for homeless services in Palm Beach County.
“There are three basics in life: food, clothing and shelter. We work with our partner agencies to provide food. We work with agencies to provide clothing. The tough one is the housing,” Burdick said. “Land in Palm Beach County is expensive; businesses want to make a profit. We need to collaborate to provide workforce and affordable housing.”
The Homeless Coalition of Palm Beach County has been the beneficiary of the Mayor’s Ball since the ball began in 2014. Proceeds from the gala have helped move 889 men, women and children into permanent housing. The Homeless Coalition also uses funds to employ a housing specialist who helps agencies identify affordable rentals.
“If we want to end homelessness, we have to make housing more affordable,” said Neil Schiller, who is chairing the Mayor’s Ball with Pamela Goodman. “The average two bedroom apartment rents for nearly $1,400 a month. For many people, that’s half of what they make. All it takes is one unexpected expense to throw off their budget.”
The Mayor’s Ball black-tie gala, themed “Be Surprised,” will be a Venetian masked ball. Organizers hope to “unmask” the issues facing the homeless. Tickets are available for $250 through the Homeless Coalition’s web site at www.homelesscoalitionpbc.org.