Divine Brown singing with the Toronto Choral Society

The Gala of Light is a fundraiser held in support of homeless women in downtown Toronto via a multi-program agency called Street Haven at the Crossroads that has been around 1965. The 2nd annual gala for Street Haven was held on April 4, 2013 at The Fifth Social featuring Juno award-winning singer Divine Brown. She was also joined on stage by the Toronto Choral Society. Even though she’s “Canada’s own certified diva” (as quoted from her twitter acct), Divine Brown was an approachable diva who was gracious enough to allow for photo opportunities with guests. The evening was hosted by CP24’s Melissa Grelo (and I had just formally met her the day before at the Open Wines party!). Toronto’s own singer-songwriter, Jesse Labelle, was also in attendance.

There was a silent auction and also a live auction with items from Canadian fashion designers, luxury gifts, sports tickets, culinary opportunities, and unique travel destinations.

After Divine Brown’s house-rocking performance the night ended with catching up with friends, meeting new friends and dancing. It was a fun night for a great charity that helps marginalized women in need right here in downtown Toronto.

r: Jesse Labelle, singer-songwriter

r: Jesse Labelle, singer-songwriter

Melissa Grelo

Melissa Grelo

Divine Brown

Divine Brown

Dale Hodder, Sharad Mohan, Lori Petteplace, Omar Leslie

Dale Hodder, Sharad Mohan, Lori Petteplace, Omar Leslie

Nick Liu (Chef of Gwailo) , Andres Marquez (Fonda Lola)

Nick Liu (Chef of Gwailo) , Andres Marquez (Fonda Lola)

See below for our photos and also here on our Facebook album.

Some tweets from the 2013 Gala of Light

ABOUT STREET HAVEN
EMERGENCY SHELTER
Nestled in a beautiful heritage house in the heart of downtown, this 38 bed shelter serves single women. We provide basic living needs: shelter, safety, meals, clothing, hot showers, medical and other necessary resources and supports for a variety of challenges ranging from mental health issues to experiences of violence, substance abuse issues, physical illness, women fleeing from domestic violence, and in all cases, extreme poverty and trauma. Our Housing Services assist women in searching, finding and securing permanent housing as well as offering support where possible to ensure successful ongoing housing.

ADDICTION SERVICES
A continuum of services for women experiencing substance abuse issues begins with an intensive 6 month 10 bed residential, abstinence based, treatment program that focuses on profound change of lifestyle and behaviour. An outreach program is available for women leaving the residential program and to other women living in the community who require support, resources, counselling and help in life planning. The community program is harm reduction based and available to women for a period of two years.

SUPPORTIVE HOUSING
We provide supportive housing for 32 women in three different locations in downtown Toronto. Women learn to live independently after recovering from massive trauma, mental health issues and/or substance abuse issues. With varying degrees of support in our separate locations, staff support women to become members in their communities, encouraging each woman to set and work towards her own goals.

LEARNING CENTRE
A place for women to access a basic literacy class, private tutoring, a computer lab and support for job readiness, Located in the Adelaide Women’s Resource Centre, this program supports women to continue their education and accomplish personal goals.

For more information visit streethaven.com and to make a donation visit www.streethaven.com/donations/

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