¡Salud! Oregon Pinot Noir Wine Auction Raises More Than $1 Million for Vineyard Worker Healthcare Foundation

¡Salud! Premiere Pinot Noir Wine Auction raises funds for their migrant healthcare program.
SALUD Auction 2018 © Kathryn Elsesser.

The two-day event and auction raised a record amount for the Tuality Healthcare Foundation.

by L.M. Archer

Dundee, OR. – The Oregon wine community raised $1,055,000 at the 2018 ¡Salud! Premiere Oregon Pinot Noir Wine Auction this year, exceeding all previous totals. The annual two-day, two-event extravaganza benefits one cause: healthcare for Oregon’s vineyard workers, many of them Hispanic immigrants.

Founded in 1991, the nationally renown ¡Salud! program runs under the aegis of Tuality Healthcare Foundation, and draws upon a staff of four bilingual outreach staff, a mobile unit and a myriad of community healthcare partners to deliver on-site preventative, vision, dental and mental healthcare to over 2,500 seasonal workers and their families.

“I truly appreciate that our team has full access to the workers during work hours,” says Leda Garside, ¡Salud! services manager and cultural liaison at Tuality Healthcare. “We bring the services to them, not wait for them to come to us. If you’re going to do it right, particularly for the under-served, uninsured, and under-insured, you have to take the services to the people.”

Due to provider synergies, ¡Salud! realizes $3 in services for every $1 procured, and runs on a budget of about $1 million in funds raised from the ¡Salud! auction. Service providers include Medical Teams International, Pacific University Dental Program, Oregon Health & Science University School of Dentistry, Pacific University Physical Therapy, Pacific University College of Optometry, and Project Access NOW. This year, ¡Salud! also participated in a successful pilot program with the Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU).

“OHSU is the number-one teaching institution in the state for everything—physicians, dental, nursing, pharmacy, public health, and rural health,” says Garside. “So this program is what a university really looks for their students to be immersed in, to expand their knowledge of community outreach and community health for future clinicians.”

This year’s event kicked off on November 9, 2018 from 2:00 to 6:30 p.m. with a Big Board Auction and Pinot Party at Ponzi Vineyards’ estate in Chehalem. Participants mingled amidst the state-of-the-art crush facilities during a sparkling wine reception hosted by Sokol Blosser Winery, featuring savory small bites, live music and a silent auction, punctuated by a passionate kick-off by Maria Ponzi.

“If you know anything about the wine community here, we do what’s right,” Ponzi told the standing-room only crowd. “We think beyond ourselves, we think about the community, and we think about respecting the land. As a second-generation vintner, I’m so proud to carry on that tradition. And ¡Salud! is really the heart of that, where we really look to our vineyard workers as a part of our family.” Read full article here.

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