In the middle of July, nearly 200 people came together at the Wequassett Resort in Harwich, making a profound statement about the critical importance of housing to our region. Together, they helped raise nearly $270,000 for our 4th Annual Oysters & Champagne.
“Make no mistake, Covid-19 and the pandemic did not cause the housing problem that we’re all experiencing right now,” our Board Chair Peter Muise told those in attendance. “It clearly magnified a longtime existing problem.”
The event allowed guests to support Housing Assistance’s work to find a solution to that problem that our CEO Alisa Magnotta stressed cannot be solved alone. “Tonight isn’t about us and what we’ve done,” she said. “It’s about us – all of us here and what we can do together for our community. Housing is a community problem and we have an affordable housing shortage and it’s going to take all of us working together to try and overcome these obstacles.”
With little to no available rental inventory on the Cape and the median home price skyrocketing to over $630,000 in a little over a year, Magnotta said, our agency needs more financial resources to properly address the region’s housing crisis. “Building more affordable housing is the only way for us to get out of this crisis,” she said. “We need to have the courage to stand up to the opposition to housing. We need to have our community lock arms and make year-round housing a priority. And I hate to be crass, but we need cash. The wages of Cape Cod do not pay for the cost of construction. We need donations. We work with our government officials in order to get subsidies which is how we put the deals together so we can have housing for our workforce.”
Oysters & Champagne’s Fundraising Ambassadors – Cape Cod Five CEO Dorothy Savarese, Shepley Wood Products President Tony Shepley, and Cape Air CEO Dan Wolf – took Magnotta’s challenge to heart, encouraging guests to be as generous as possible in their giving.
“As we come out of the hibernation of the last 15 months and we look at the landscape that has become the new Cape Cod, it really is different,” Wolf said. “It is just as much defined by who’s here and who can be afford to be here by who isn’t and who we’ve lost and who is desperate and who is hurting right now.”
If you weren’t able to attend this year’s Oysters & Champagne, but still want to support our efforts to address the housing crisis, click here to make a donation.