Q&A: VOICES Inaugural ‘Building Bridges’ Luncheon Set for April 10


New Canaan-based Voices Center for Resilience, or ‘VOICES,’ will hold its inaugural Building Bridges Luncheon on April 10 (details here, info on tickets and sponsorships here). We talked to the organization’s co-founder, Mary Fetchet, about VOICES as well as the luncheon itself, where Emmy Award-winning journalist and ABC News anchor Bob Woodruff will be honored. 

Here’s our exchange.


New Canaanite: Before we talk about the inaugural Building Bridges Luncheon on April 10, please tell our readers a little bit about Voices Center for Resilience. When and why did you change the name of the organization from its original Voices of 9/11?

Mary Fetchet

Mary Fetchet: Following the loss of our 24-year old son, Brad on 9/11, I co-founded Voices of September 11th along with Beverly Eckert, whose husband Sean Rooney died in the attacks. At the time I was a clinical social worker working at Bridges, an outpatient mental health clinic in Milford, CT. From 9/11 to today, VOICES provides long-term support services and access to mental health care and resources for thousands of victims’ families, responders and survivors. In 2020 we changed our name to Voices Center for Resilience to reflect our commitment to share lessons learned and provide education and training to help communities prepare for and respond to other tragedies.

Talk to us about the mental health resources that Voices offers. Who do you help?

VOICES provides a variety of mental health programs including telehealth support groups, care for the caregiver, and bereavement groups for victims’ families, survivors and responders and monthly webinars. In 2022 we established an in-person Parents Helping Parents Support Group to support parents living locally who have suffered the loss of a child of any age. The group meets on the first and third Wednesday of each month at the VOICES office. VOICES also hosts monthly webinars on a variety of topics related to mental health and wellness. The webinars are free and open to all. 

How is Voices Center for Resilience supported?

VOICES programs are supported by our generous donors, grants from foundations and corporate sponsors. Our annual fundraising events – the April 10 Luncheon; the June 10 Quaker Ridge Golf Outing; and the November 14 Always Remember Gala in NYC raise important funds to support our programs. 

Tell us about the April 10 luncheon. You are honoring Bob Woodruff, an Emmy Award-winning Journalist and ABC news anchor. What made VOICES choose him?

Bob Woodruff

Bob’s story is inspirational and exemplifies VOICES mission to make a difference in the lives of those impacted by tragedy. After the attacks on 9/11, Bob took on the tremendous responsibility of reporting on the Gulf War. While in Iraq, he suffered a traumatic brain injury when his vehicle was hit with an IED. We are honoring Bob with VOICES Building Bridges Award in recognition of his incredible determination while recovering, along with his subsequent commitment to creating The Bob Woodruff Foundation that supports veterans returning from the battlefield. 

What else, if anything, would you like to tell our readers about VOICES or the April 10 luncheon?

Our family has lived in New Canaan for over 36 years, and with the help of friends and a dedicated staff VOICES was founded in response to a horrific tragedy. VOICES has an opportunity to leverage our expertise to help families impacted by other tragedies, and a responsibility to share our lessons learned with public and private stakeholders to help prepare for and respond to traumatic events. These efforts are reflected in our participation in New Canaan’s Behavioral Health Committee and VOICES Community Preparedness Trainings conducted for public and private emergency response stakeholders.

In addition to a motivational conversation with Bob Woodruff, our April luncheon features a special performance by Broadway stars Ali Ewoldt and David Hancock Turner. Whether you are attending or not, you can purchase tickets for a drawing of fabulous prizes: “A New York Experience” with a 3-night stay at the Hard Rock Hotel, limo service, dinner at Rao’s, VIP tickets to The Daily Show recording, and a VIP tour and tickets to a performance at the Perlman Performing Art Center, and much more. 

For those interested in attending the luncheon or purchasing prize tickets visit our website at www.voicescenter.org. RSVP by Wednesday, April 3.

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