The Viscardi Center will hold its third Casino Night fund-raiser on Feb. 9 from 6-9 p.m. at 201 I.U. Willets Road in Albertson.
The center last held the event in January 2020 before the Covid-19 pandemic. Gaming tables, playing chips, an open bar, a dinner and dessert buffet, a silent auction and raffles will be among the evening’s festivities.
“What our guests really enjoy about it is that it’s just really a fun evening for people to come together with their colleagues, friends and family members,” Kim Brussell, vice president of public affairs and marketing for the Viscardi Center, said. At the same time, they also “know that the money that’s being raised at the event is really helping individuals with disabilities.”
The Viscardi Center is a non-profit network that offers services to educate, employ and empower people with disabilities. Dr. Henry Viscardi Jr., who wore prosthetic legs himself, founded the center in 1952. He also served as a disability adviser to eight U.S. presidents and became one of the world’s leading advocates for people with disabilities.
The center will use the funds to supply laptop computers, educational materials, transportation, assistive technology, personal care assistants and offer internships as well as scholarships. The money will also contribute to the organization’s new inclusive higher education and post-secondary initiatives.
“This new program will provide some comprehensive, post-secondary programming for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities,” Brussell said. “It’ll give them the opportunity to continue to learn. It’ll give them some socialization opportunities as well as some career exploration that they might not otherwise have had.”
While there has been a rise in these types of programs nationwide, Brussell said they are lacking on Long Island. The center plans to kick off its first pilot program in the coming months.
Tickets are $135 per person and can be purchased at ViscardiCenter.org/all-in or at the door on the day of the event. Sponsorships are also available.