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Care Affair brings in more than $45,000 to support food service, hospitality workers

by DEVIN WEEKS
Staff Writer | February 15, 2020 1:00 AM

Care Affair raises more than $45,000 for food service, hospitality workers

COEUR d’ALENE — The volunteers of CDAIDE have seen firsthand just how much this community cares.

The third annual Care Affair, CDAIDE's biggest fundraiser, was its most successful yet. The Feb. 6 event, held at The Coeur d'Alene Resort, brought in more than $45,000 to support local hospitality and restaurant workers when they are struggling and need help with resources and expenses they can't afford on their own.

"This is a big step up," CDAIDE board President Rebecca Smith said Friday. "For an organization in its third year to develop that level of community support is exciting."

People representing a variety of sectors attended the event, from food service to churches to large and small local businesses.

"It's a pretty wide assortment of people supporting this work," Smith said. "They live here and they see the need all around them. Because they see it, they care about the mission. It's really encouraging."

Care Affair event chair Bev Moss said more than 300 people packed the house.

"We sold out a week prior to the event, which is really unusual," she said. "We were really united as a community to help this part of our population. It was an amazing feeling of community in the room that night."

Moss said people really came together at the Care Affair because they know it's a cause that affects so many people.

"We've all worked in food service at some point, or our kids have," she said. "So many of us identify with the people in the industry. I think that's another reason why it's easy to get on board because they can empathize. Most people have been there."

CDAIDE formed in 2016 when leadership of First Presbyterian Church in downtown Coeur d'Alene recognized this work was necessary and in need of a dedicated group to lead the charge. With support and seed money from First Presbyterian, CDAIDE was formed and became a nonprofit in 2017. Its founding board of directors included owners and managers in the hospitality industry, community leaders, other churches and members of First Presbyterian who had been part of the original vision.

Now that North Idaho and this need is growing, Smith said CDAIDE will soon conduct a search for a part-time executive director who will be able to commit more time to helping more people.

"We're really excited to get someone dedicated to working on this, working on outreach and letting people know what CDAIDE is so more people can make use of our services."

Info: www.cdaide.org

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CDAIDE board President Rebecca Smith addresses the crowd at the third annual Care Affair on Feb. 6 in The Coeur d’Alene Resort. The event was a success, bringing in more than $45,000 to help local re

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Renee Bordelon raises her number to bid on a chef. CDAIDE is a nonprofit that assists hospitality and food service employees with needs like utility bills, medical expenses and dental work they can’t