By Brooke Curley
SAFFORD – Bidding for a good cause, the fifth annual Funding our Future auction brought out the community for food, fun and the thrill of the bid.
On Friday, April 21, the auction commenced in union with the Graham County 4-H Club, the Graham County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, the Boys & Girls Club of the Gila Valley, along with Southeastern Arizona Community Uniques Services’ (SEACUS) Meals-on-Wheels program.
Lori Knight, of the Graham County 4-H Club, is one of the main organizers of the event. Knight said this year’s auction doubled in size from the previous year.
“It is phenomenal, we have had more help than ever before and this community is so generous with all that they have been giving,” Knight said. “All (of the) money raised here stays here. It helps out everybody here. It helps out our youth, our elderly(and) it helps out our search and rescue.”
Knight said the items donated to this year’s auction have been high quality, and the community had truly shown its support.
“I just want to thank everybody for their generosity and everybody who has pitched in to make this happen,” Knight said. “It’s a good thing for these kids to see how much they are loved by everybody in Graham County.”
Bill Brandau, University of Arizona Ag Center County Extension Director, is a yearly participator in the auction. Brandau told Gila Valley Central that the auction was mainly to educate and showcase the young people of the community.
“It’s a benefit to the kids,” Brandau said. “It’s fun to see the people from all over the community participate in this.”
All proceeds from the benefit were donated to the Graham County 4-H Club, the Graham County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, the Boys & Girls Club of the Gila Valley and SEACUS’ Meals-on-Wheels program. Items donated to the auction were contributed by individuals within the community as well as organizations.
Not only did the adults have many items to bid on, but the children were encouraged to bid as well. Children-only bidders were encouraged to bid for items such as an art in the jar and a laser tag birthday party. The largest items up for bidding included a chicken coop tractor, a kids picnic table and a wooden cocktail bar.