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Benefit raised funds for substance abuse prevention while spotlighting importance of family time


(West Palm Beach, Fla.) – Denim and gingham was the fabric of choice on Sunday, March 4, when more than 175 Hanley Foundation supporters attended the 23rd Annual Family Picnic. The National Croquet Center served as the backdrop for the long-standing benefit, which raised funds for research-based prevention programs in public and private schools, including many schools in Palm Beach County. Leading this year’s benefit were Chairmen Dr. Suzette Chen and Dr. Kevin Tenn Yuk with Honorary Chairs Kai Li Fouts and Chris Jette.


“You hear us talk a lot about ‘Family Time, Is Time Well Spent,’” said Ryan Wertepny, Executive Director of Prevention Services for Hanley Foundation. “That’s because we know that the best thing we can do to help keep our children safe from drugs and alcohol, is to spend time with them.  Our main focus in prevention is to reduce underage drinking and to delay the age of first use. We know that the longer we can delay the age of first use, the more likely that individual will not suffer with addiction.  The goal is to stop addiction before it even starts.”


During the event, families enjoyed the clear blue skies while having lunch on the Croquet Center’s terrace. Children couldn’t get enough of the endless activities including an enormous bounce house, face painting, balloon animals and an up close and personal experience with unique wildlife from Busch Wildlife Sanctuary.


“At Hanley Foundation, we have a team of 25 prevention professionals offering a variety of substance abuse prevention services in 15 counties throughout the state,” continued Wertepny.  “The Foundation will serve more than 34,000 students this year alone.  We recently secured additional funding to expand our prevention services over the next three years.  We will be working in six new counties and serving an additional 10,000 students annually. We know that prevention works and appreciate all of your support today at Family Picnic.”


The luncheon also included a one-of-a-kind silent auction for children only, where kids got their chance to bid on fun items exclusively for them. There was also an adult silent auction that included jewelry, sports memorabilia, tickets to local attractions and many more items. The afternoon ended with a performance from the Young Singers of the Palm Beaches. As families were leaving, they were able to make a donation to Hanley Foundation, and in return, more than one hundred teddy bears found a new home that afternoon.


The Family Picnic committee included Jenny Alcebo, Lyanne Azqueta, CJ Benoit, Tory and Mike Casey, Michelle and Bob Diffenderfer, Rachel and Steve Docekal, Hailey Emmett, Shana and Wilson Enriquez, Jessica and Mike Gruber, Linda and Mike Hanley, Robin and Scott Hansel, Fran Marcone and David Werner, Buck Martinez, Jennifer and Michael Moore, Holly O’Neill, Taylor and James Schneider, Krissy Webb, and Jereann and Lawren Zann.


Sponsors included Lyanne Azqueta, Hanley Family Foundation, Amy and Drew Rothermel, Sarah Cortvriend, Kai Li Fouts and Chris Jette, Wilmington Trust N.A., Futures of Palm Beach, Shana and Wilson Enriquez, Dr. Suzette Chen and Dr. Kevin Tenn Yuk, The Cairnes Family, The Diffenderfer Family, The Docekal Family, The Forsyth Family, The Kirkpatrick Family, The Schneider Family, The Webb Family, LILA Photo, Jeanne Ford, Laura Fuller, Nancy Hooker, Ellin Miller and Palm Beach Society.


For more information about Hanley Foundation, local prevention programming or future fundraising events, please visit, email or call 561-268-2355.