The 26th annual benefit dance for the students of the Southeastern Massachusetts Educational Collaborative (SMEC) is taking over Kilburn Mill in New Bedford on Friday, March 22.

For the students, it’s a night of fun and entertainment. For the Friends of SMEC, it’s a pivotal fundraising effort that keeps the nonprofit organization successful.

Here’s how you can help make March 22 a memorable night for a local nonprofit that is changing the lives of children and adults with disabilities.

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What Is Friends of SMEC?

SMEC is a public education collaborative established in 1975 to offer a variety of services for students with special needs age 4 to 21, as well as adults with developmental disabilities.

SMEC is an extension of nine public school systems that stretch over the SouthCoast, with programs and services locally based and directed.

Friends of SMEC Inc. evolved from an informal parents group that met for informational purposes. Originally called “Parents Supporting Students of the Mason Burt School,” the group eventually became PSILL-Friends of SMEC, with a mission to raise funds to help individuals with developmental disabilities.

All funds raised directly assist the SMEC community in reaching personal goals in employment, education, independent living, self-advocacy and self-care.

How to Help the Benefit Dance

“Due to the current financial climate, many of the activities and items funded by Friends of SMEC would not be accessible otherwise,” said Sherri Tetrault of Friends of SMEC’s efforts to raise funds.

The annual benefit dance, along with a silent auction and prize drawing, make up the agency’s major fundraiser of the year.

The SouthCoast is encouraged to contribute a gift, make a donation or volunteer to help make this fundraiser impactful.

The organization is also selling ads for the dance program, with several price points available.

All funds raised will directly support SMEC’s students and individuals.

Those looking to help are encouraged to reach out to Sherri Tetrault at 508-717-1932.

Let’s help make a night to remember for the students of SMEC.

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