Ocean County-based Friends Helping Friends of New Jersey is gearing up to hold their 5th Annual Golf Outing and Dinner Gift Auction Gala Event.

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The charity launched five years ago to help friends battling cancer ease the financial burden of their mounting medical bills. After seeing the success, the organizers kept it going, selecting a new group of people to help around the area each year.

The yearly event continues to grow each and every year. In fact, this edition had to change venues to accommodate the regularly increasing participants.

It will be held on Friday, November 1st, at Woodlake Country Club in Lakewood. The fundraiser begins with a golf outing at 10 a.m., followed by a dinner and gift auction.

Co-Founder Leon Mowadia, Jr. says despite a tough economic climate and many great area charities for people to donate to, Friends Helping Friends has seen nothing but steady growth in terms of their fundraising efforts.

"I think the difference with our organization is it's a direct assistance fundraiser, so they know the people that the money is going to," he explained.

The group has raised over $230,000 in just four years, and they are hopeful to edge that total over the $300,000 mark with this year's event, which is raising money for two people:

  • Michael Rankin - A local student who is currently battling cancer.
  • Cara Bove Schoner - A local mother of a newborn child battling cancer while raising her family.

"It's a great event, it's very uplifting. We don't make it sad. They're there to pay it forward to other people," Mowadia said.

He said that there is never a shortage of people who need assistance around Ocean County. They try to narrow down who the yearly fundraiser will be held for as early as possible in the year, so that they are can market the event properly.

"It seems to find us. The families seem to find us. We always hear it through somebody," he said.

The goal of the charity is to pay it forward with a sole purpose of helping friends in need.

"At the end of the day, the message is that we're a direct assistance organization that truly is there to help you during your toughest time," Mowadia said.

Learn more about the great event and top-notch non-profit organization by visiting their website and Facebook page.

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