Donors, recipients celebrate first annual Carl V. Bini Winter Bash

Construct Relief Foundation. First Annual Carl V. Bini Memorial Fund Winter Bash, January 31, 2015. (Staten Island Advance/Andrew Simontacchi)

Construct Relief Foundation. First Annual Carl V. Bini Memorial Fund Winter Bash, January 31, 2015. (Staten Island Advance/Andrew Simontacchi)

Andrew V. Simontacchi Staten Island Advance

The Carl V. Bini Memorial Fund, a Staten Island-based non-profit organization that provides aid to borough families in need, hosted its first annual Bini Winter Bash Saturday night at the Hilton Garden Inn, Bloomfield.

Cocktail hour began in the Trevi Garden at 7 p.m., followed by a dinner reception in Nicotra’s Ballroom at 8 p.m. The night ended with an after-party at the Above Rooftop.

The Winter Bash featured a silent auction in the lobby outside of the ballroom and a performance by Rob Base, known for his hit song “It Takes Two.”

Massimo DiDonna, president and co-founder of The Carl V. Bini Memorial Fund, named for a firefighter with Concord’s Rescue Co. 5 who died on September 11, 2001, during the attacks on the World Trade Center, attended the event.

“Your support allowed us to be recognized as one of the fastest growing non-profits post-Hurricane Sandy,” he said.

Dominic Cicciarelli, president of Construct Relief Foundation, a Staten Island-based non-profit construction group, called DiDonna a “genuine guy, a straight shooter, someone who do anything for anyone, as long as it goes toward a good cause.”

Since Hurricane Sandy, Cicciarelli and his foundation — with the help of DiDonna — have completely rebuilt 10 Staten Island homes, free of charge. The work has included everything from molding and paint to finished kitchens and bathrooms.

Linda Lasheen, the president of P.S. 37, also joined the celebration Saturday night.

DiDonna’s fund was able to donate $35,000 to the Great Kills school, in order to completely re-do their cafeteria.

“It’s bright, colorful, friendly and has a very warm atmosphere now,” Ms. Lasheen said. “The students love it.”

Adding, “The parents, students and staff can’t thank him enough.”

P.S. 37 isn’t the only Island school that has received help from the Bini Fund.

Charlie Dazzo, teacher and coordinator of the Solar Car Project at Tottenville High School was on hand Saturday night to celebrate.

“The Bini Fund has been a very good contributor toward the solar car,” Dazzo said. “Without Massimo’s help, all of this would have been much more difficult.”
Tottenville’s solar powered car is the only car to represent New York City and one of only three teams to represent New York state in the Winston Solar Car Challenge each year.

Currently, their car is ranked second in the nation. “We are very blessed to have him and his foundation,” Dazzo said.

Also in attendance, Guyon Rescue’s president and founder, Derek Tabacco.

Guyon Rescue is a 100 percent grassroots, volunteer, non-governmental organization providing immediate assistance to the families of Staten Island affected by Hurricane Sandy.

“Massimo has always helped out the smaller organizations,” Tabacco said. “They have infrastructure, staff and funding; anything we needed, they have.”

Local politicians such as Councilman Vincent Ignizio and Assemblyman Joe Borelli also came out in support of the celebration.

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