When Dawson County-based nonprofit Alliance Together gathered hundreds of people for their annual gala last Saturday evening, they were proud to announce that not one, not two but four charitable causes would be getting a financial boost.
This year’s theme was “Kentucky Derby,” fashioned after the prominent horse-racing event that took place in Louisville, Kentucky the early evening of May 7. The event was held at the White Laurel Estate venue and featured activities ranging from live performers to a silent auction and casino-style games.
Money raised during the event will benefit The Epilepsy Foundation of Georgia. Representatives for the Good Shepherd Clinic and Dawson County Parks and Recreation’s EPIC program also each received a $5,000 check from Alliance Together.
Additionally, owl change banks were given out for attendees to collect coins over the next year for the Rotary Club’s Coins for Alzheimer’s program.
Good Shepherd Clinic provides medical services for families who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford those services.
Alliance Together was started in 2019 by Matthew Meyers, who was spurred to start the nonprofit in light of his son Matthew Jr. 's struggles with a rare form of epilepsy.
After an educational video was played at the gala, Meyers repeated his nonprofit’s desire to raise awareness through events like the gala about the different challenges faced by those with epilepsy and their families.
Since the nonprofit’s start, the senior Meyers and his wife, Amanda, have sought input from their employees about what philanthropic causes mattered to them.
During the gala, Amanda praised the mission of Good Shepherd Clinic, citing the heavy medication and medical services expenses that those with epilepsy face.
“For families to take on that [kind of] cost when they already don't have a lot…[just] for their child to survive seizures, it’s a lot,” she said.
She later shared how Parks and Rec’s EPIC program “spoke to her heart” given her uncle had Down Syndrome and her father made an effort to give back to special needs-related causes during her childhood.
The EPIC program has partnered with Creative Enterprises, now based in Dawsonville, to help give kids with special needs recreational opportunities at facilities like Rock Creek Park.
The Alliance Together corporate office is in Dawsonville. Other offices are in Princeton, Boston and Chicago.
More information about the nonprofit is available at https://alliancetogether.org/.