A who’s who of Hamilton County met on March 13 for the annual fundraiser breakfast for Janus Developmental Services.
Janus Developmental Services provides people with disabilities the opportunity to participate and contribute through the community through programs that help them find jobs, develop skills and thrive in the world.
The four honorary co-chairs for the fundraiser were Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard, Noblesville Mayor John Ditslear, Westfield Mayor Andy Cook and Fishers Mayor Scott Fadness.
According to a list provided by Janus, other elected officials in attendance include Carmel City Council President Rick Sharp, Judge Brian Poindexter, Hamilton County Recorder Jennifer Hayden, Indiana State Rep. Tony Cook, Indiana State Rep. Kathy Kreag Richardson, Hamilton County Councilman Steve Schwartz , Hamilton County Councilman Paul Ayers, Hamilton County Commissioner Mark Heirbrandt and Hamilton County Sheriff Mark Bowen. Indiana Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann also spoke via a prerecorded video speech.
In all, around 400 people filled the 502 East Event Centre, a new banquet hall where The Fountains used to be located.
The breakfast put a spotlight on all of the great things that Janus does, including helping find jobs for people with disabilities in Hamilton County. The nonprofit has partnered with 40 local area businesses.
Megan Varnaud, 47, a 1998 graduate from Hamilton Heights High School, spoke about how Janus helped find her current job at the Monon Community Center, where she’s worked for the past three years, cleaning exercise equipment for about 15 hours a week.
“I like my job a lot and I make more than the minimum wage and just like you I pay taxes,” she said.
Other services offered by Janus include the Hamilton County Express, a public transit system that is scheduled on a first call basis to help people commute within the county.
Debbie Laird, director of development and transportation services at Janus, said there’s been a 63 percent cut in government funding, so it’s even more important to fundraise for their nonprofit.
“Raising funds helps us keep these programs going,” she said.
To find out how you can get involved with Janus, contact the development department at 773-8781, ext. 112.