Last month’s two-day ¡Salud! event, the Big Board and live auctions raised just over $700,000. As the main fundraising effort of the non-profit that supports medical access for Oregon’s seasonal vineyard workers and their families, these dollars will contribute to the organization’s continued success. ¡Salud! also announced a new endeavor during the second night’s live auction that received much support by the guests.
The Big Board tasting and auction was filled with Pinot noir cuvee blends from 43 different Oregon wineries. Attendees had the opportunity to taste these wines, created especially for ¡Salud!, then bid on up to the five cases available. As the bids came in, the Big Board projected the totals on the winery walls of Domaine Drouhin Oregon, the event host.
If someone was particularly enamored with a specific winemaker’s cuvee, they could buy out the entire lot of five cases, becoming the sole owner of the 2012 ¡Salud! Pinot noir. For a set price, two wine lovers indeed did just that, buying out both Domaine Drouhin Oregon & Penner-Ash ¡Salud! cuvees. The final Big Board auction raised a record $180,000 in less than four hours.
The generous momentum continued during the second night’s auction and dinner. Substantial financial gifts made by Erath Family Foundation and Willamette Valley Vineyards, combined with many guest contributions, will fund a new mobile wellness clinic. Currently, ¡Salud! relies on independent contractors for these types of services so by bringing them in-house, the organization will save an estimated $30,000 annually.
¡Salud! Services Manager, Leda Garside RN thanked supporters: “Your support goes a very long way to provide services which would otherwise be out of reach for thousands of people. On their behalf, I thank you for championing ¡Salud! and for recognizing their contributions to our great Oregon wines.”
The mission supports workers who cannot receive health insurance benefits due to the brevity of employment with any one winery or vineyard. In 2012, 4,009 workers and family members registered in the program, and over 7,400 medical and dental encounters documented. Through ¡Salud! workers receive access to primary care, health education, screenings, dental care, assistance with medical paperwork and more.
The 2014 benefit will be held November 14 and 15, 2013 “Vintners Circle” wineries: