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2020 UP Gala: Event Cancelled

The UP & Away Charity Gala is the Unlocking Potential (UP) Foundation’s premier event of the year to raise awareness and funds for Catholic Family Service programs. Unfortunately, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 event.

In April, we shared our initial decision to postpone the UP Gala, which had been scheduled for May 7. We hoped that more time would show a clear path to a safe event.

Although the trend in Alberta continues in the right direction, crowds are still a significant risk for the transmission of COVID. It is unlikely that a 500-person gathering like the UP Gala could happen this fall while ensuring the health of everyone involved.

After considering the costs and benefits of several alternatives, cancelling this year’s Gala and focusing our efforts on next year emerged as the best option. As we shift to planning for 2021, we will have you in mind and look forward to the opportunity to gather again.

This year has presented challenges and, like so many challenges faced before in Calgary, it has demonstrated the incredible generosity and community spirit of Calgarians. The support you have given us—especially considering the pandemic’s economic and social impact—has been nothing short of inspiring. We are humbled by your generosity and deeply proud to be a part of your community.

Thank you.

In the past months, the ways you have shown up for us make cancelling the UP Gala particularly disappointing for us. The event represents one of our favourite opportunities to connect with you. We lament the lost opportunity to tell you—in person—how much your support means, and what you have helped individuals and families in Calgary to achieve.

What to do With Your Tickets

If you have already paid for your tickets, all you need to do is tell us which of the following options you would like to pursue, and we will take care of the rest. We will reach out to you or, if you already know what you would like to do, you are welcome to contact us at any time or use the form on this page.

  1. Donate the full amount you paid for your ticket(s) to support the UP Foundation and CFS programs that serve young fathers—the intended feature for the 2020 UP Gala. You will receive a charitable tax receipt for the full amount of your donation.
  2. Donate a portion of the amount you paid for your ticket(s) to support the UP Foundation and CFS programs that serve young fathers. You will receive a charitable tax receipt for the donated amount and a refund of the remainder.
  3. Receive a refund of the full amount you paid for your ticket(s). Our city is different, and everyone has experienced some level of impact. We completely understand.

If you sponsored the event, either in addition to or independent of purchasing tickets, expect a call from us—a chance for us to say thank you and to talk about the next steps.

We’ll contact you about your tickets, but if you already know what you would like to do, you are welcome to contact us at any time or use the form below.

Donate the full amount I paid for my ticket(s)Donate a portion of the amount I paid for my ticket(s)Receive a refund of the full amount I paid for my ticket(s)

Support Young Dads

Cancelling the UP Gala creates a significant financial obstacle. Last year’s Gala raised over $350,000.

Funds raised at the 2020 UP Gala were planned to support CFS programs that serve young fathers. A traditionally underserved population, our innovative programs offer a variety of supports that can help steer young fathers towards healthier patterns.

We developed and introduced programs focused on young fathers to complement the supports we have offered to young moms for years. By also supporting young fathers, we can access a critical leverage point for growing healthy young families and breaking intergenerational cycles of poverty and abuse. You can learn more about why supports for young dads matter at

Silent Auction

Many of you donated to the UP Gala silent auction. We are still working out the details but wanted you to know the items you generously donated will still fill the purpose for which you gave them!

Later this year, we will hold an online auction event, where you and others will be able to view and bid on items from your phone or computer. Stay tuned for more details about this and other fundraising activities in the second half of the year.

Although the Gala is cancelled this year, you can support young dads!


As mentioned above, we will be in touch, but if you have any pressing questions, please contact Tara Horsley, Interim Lead – Community Relations, at 403-205-8528 or

2020 UP Gala Sponsors


Shaw Calgary Logo




Trident Capital Partners

The Unlocking Potential (UP) Foundation is the fundraising arm of Catholic Family Service of Calgary. UP ensures the sustainability of innovative programs that build strong families.

Yes, you can start a conversation with us today . . .