This year’s 3rd annual Le Grand Bal was a masquerade-themed black-tie “Illusion” charity gala where guests donned venetian masks at the Fermenting Cellar on November 19th, 2015.
I’ve been lucky to be supporting Brittney Kuczynski (CAFA), one of the Le Grand Bal committee members, since her days at Oceana Ball in 2012. She told me how this year, she really wanted to tackle the ugly topic of sex trafficking. We don’t talk about it, but it happens. And it doesn’t just happen in far away lands but it happens right here in our own neighbourhoods.
“I was very surprised to learn that sex trafficking is a huge issue in Toronto; the Toronto Police reported a 360% increase in related arrests this past year alone. Female victims have commonly been sex-trafficked from a young age (as young as 12 years old), come from middle class background, and from local Toronto neighborhoods.”
We watched a powerful and personal video based on a true story about a girl demonstrating this fact. It hits so close to home, the fact that it can happen to a normal young girl right here in Ontario.
Guests were treated to the talents of some amazing young singers.
This year’s Le Grand Bal charity proceeds were raised to support a transitional housing program for victims of sex trafficking.
On this special evening, Suzanne and Edward Rogers made the special announcement that they will donate $1 million to the program. Adding to that, Le Grand Bal also announced a 3 year commitment to support the cause.
Kudos to the Le Grand Bal committee for bringing to the spotlight awareness about sex trafficking and sexual violence.
For more info about Convenant House Toronto visit www.covenanthousetoronto.ca
Photos by Nick Lee