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We would like to thank Shore To Help for their incredibly generous donation. To learn more about this amazing non-profit and this gift, please read the article below, as printed in the Coast Star. To visit their website, please visit:

Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore members [from left] Luanne Wood, director, Wall; JoAnn Refano, volunteer, Howell; and Pat Hahn, assistant director, Toms River; hold a check of $45,000 they received from Shore to Help, at The Salty Whale Guesthouse in Manasquan on Feb. 10.

Shore to Help donates $45K to Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore



WALL TOWNSHIP — The Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore was chosen as the 2021 Shore to Help recipient, receiving a donation totaling $45,000 at an event on Feb. 10 hosted by The Salty Whale Guesthouse in Manasquan.

Shore To Help of Monmouth Beach is a local charity that gathers its community to raise funds for local charities through the annual Golf Classic and the Turkey Bowl.

Since 2007, Shore To Help has selected and supported one local charity each year, and they have raised close to $350,000 in total.

Having the Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore be chosen greatly benefits critically ill children and their families who live in Middlesex, Ocean, Monmouth, and Mercer counties through the foundation’s goal of giving them the gift of their dreams.

These dreams are usually trips or other coveted experiences the children receive, with parties held at Allaire Care in Wall Township.

According to Luanne Wood, the director of the Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore and longtime Wall Resident, the donation of $45,000 means they can provide even more dreams to chronically ill children.

"Based upon this donation, the Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore will be able to fulfill up to eight additional dreams with this one donation. This donation came at a perfect time since more dreams are ramping up this year, especially now more will have the ability to travel with less restrictions," said Mrs. Wood.

Shore to Help always looks for a local charity committed to their cause and saw the Dream Factory as an ideal candidate.

"They look at the mission of other charities, and they want to know the money is staying local. Also, they want to ensure there's not a lot of overhead. We are all volunteers, and 96% of all the money goes directly to the children's dream." said Ms. Wood.

"We were overwhelmed with this donation; we've never gotten one so substantial. It was very thrilling to be recognized, and it's especially nice to know the support is from another local charity. It's incredibly humbling."

According to charity navigator, Dream Factory has four stars, meaning they are a top-rated charity regarding where most of their money goes.

Ms. Wood has worked with the Dream Factory since 2010 when they opened their first chapter in New Jersey. Founded in Kentucky, Dream Factory has 37 chapters in the United States.

"Our chapter in New Jersey is the only one. Dream Factory Inc. will support each other if funding is low; we all work together. But, after this donation, I feel much more secure that we won't have to ask them," she said.

"Fundraising can be challenging, but with COVID restrictions, it has added another level of challenges for local communities who lean on fundraising donations to continue their mission. "

With fewer restrictions on public gatherings, Dream Factory of the Jersey Shore can host most fundraisers.

"We are getting back to fundraisers now. We will be having a pocketbook bingo in Manasquan in April; we hope it will generate enough for another dream," she said.

Pocketbook Bingo will give participants a chance to win designer bags, among other gifts. Usually, they raise enough for one dream at each fundraising event.

"It's a great feeling to help these kids who face so much at such a young age. We want these dreams by all means, but we get nervous that we will run out of a budget.

What sets them apart from other charities, like Make-a-wish, is that they offer their experiences to chronically ill children and not just the terminally ill.

"The children we help don't need to be terminally ill; they could have all kinds of other chronic conditions like diabetes one or cystic fibrosis, to name a few. Make-a-wish is great, but they don't deal with those kinds of situations," said Ms. Wood.

"We want to care for children like that too because their lives are totally affected physically and emotionally just like those who have a terminal illness."

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