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The 101st annual Charity Ball sponsored by Maria M. Love Convalescent Fund Board will take place Dec. 10 in Buffalo Convention Center. Francie Hace and Mary Ellen Burke are chairwomen.

Dancing for middle school students will begin at 6 p.m. and conclude with a parent-child dance at 8:15. Joseph Malkiewicz will be master of ceremonies. Upper school students will dance from 9:30 to midnight. Music will be provided by KISS 98.5.

Proceeds benefit the convalescent fund. When Maria Maltby Love began what originally was called the Children's Charity Ball, it was the only source of income, other than herself, for her social service projects -- Fitch Creche, which she began in 1881 as first day care center in the United States for working mothers, and the Church District Plan incorporated in 1896 to relieve the plight of the destitute by educating 122 interfaith churches in social service work throughout the city.

Today, in addition to the ball, money for the nonprofit organization is raised from a spring luncheon, special projects, bequests and donations. The fund provides services to people of all ages in Erie County with medical disabilities who are ineligible for immediate aid from traditional service organizations. Aid can be provided as an interim measure until other sources are found.

Categories of assistance are convalescent care aids, adaptive equipment, specialized dietary needs, medication or pharmaceutical supplies, medical transportation and utility payments.

Those elected to the fund board are women who have demonstrated previous community service, although the executive director is a professional social worker. Potential clients must be referred to the executive director by established social services agencies. More than 100 agencies in the county participate.

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