On Thursday, October 26, 2017, Unique People Services (UPS) will celebrate our 26th Anniversary Gala at Marina Del Ray in the Bronx. This milestone event is vital in supporting our mission of providing homes and comprehensive support service to people with special needs, helping to raise awareness for hundreds of business owners and friends of UPS who share our vision to transform lives. Our gala theme, “A Celebration of Unique People,” will once again encapsulate the important work that we do and the hundreds of lives we touch each year. For 26 years we’ve been committed to “Understanding People, Providing Homes and Serving Communities.” This year’s Annual Awards Dinner and Gala promises to be especially memorable as we pay tribute a stellar group of honorees that are being recognized for their extraordinary philanthropic work to impact the lives of individuals with HIV/AIDS. Honorees include Ms. Sheryl Lee Ralph, actress, activist, and Chair and Founder of the DIVA Foundation, which is a foundation that advocates for those effected by HIV/AIDS, Former New York City Mayor, the Honorable David N. Dinkins, Ms. Jessica Katz of the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development and Mr. Mario Procida, President/CEO of Procida Construction Corporation. Additionally, during the evening, UPS will announce its 2017 Individual of the Year, Yessenia Acosta, who selected was from an array of program participants that have overcome insurmountable challenges to lead fulfilling, productive lives. Proceeds from this year’s event will support the 2017 opening of UPS’ first affordable housing project, Lynn’s Place, enabling low income New Yorkers and individuals with a mental illness to thrive in the community. Some of the proceeds will also help to support programs ineligible for government funding, such as UPS’ Art Program, staffed by volunteers from Beacon Therapy Services. Funds raised will help to secure necessary supplies and materials, enabling individuals with developmental disabilities to express themselves through art.