PAFN Creates Canada’s Largest Luncheon for Autism

PAFN Creates Canada’s Largest Luncheon for Autism

British Columbia’s new Parq Vancouver played venue host to the LAUNCH Holiday Luncheon that raised a whopping $513,000 for Pacific Autism families affected by ASD across the province

British Columbia’s new Parq Vancouver played venue host to the LAUNCH Holiday Luncheon that raised a whopping $513,000 for Pacific Autism families affected by ASD across the province

Vancouver, Friday Dec 1, 2017 – Generosity from British Columbians was in full force today as 1,000 community leaders and philanthropists came together in a never-before way to create the largest luncheon for Autism in Canada’s history. The LAUNCH Holiday Luncheon, presented by Parq Vancouver, was a sold-out event that honoured three leading organizations that have created first–of–their–kind community inclusion initiatives in Canada, partnering with Pacific Autism Family Network (PAFN). The Vancouver Police Department (VPD), BC Lions and LifeLabs were each awarded and honoured, with VPD Chief Adam Palmer, Lions CEO Dennis Skulsky and LifeLabs CEO Sue Paish, accepting the awards on behalf of their organizations.


  • 1,000 of BC’s most influential leaders, including dignitaries, CEO’s, media personalities and politicians came together in one room to raise substantial funds for Pacific Autism Family Network & the thousands of families affected by Autism all across the province
  • Major Remarks by:
  • Diana Bennett (Paragon Gaming Co-Founder and Chairman)
  • Adam Palmer (VPD Chief of Police)
  • Tamara Vrooman (Vancity CEO)
  • Sue Paish (LifeLabs CEO)
  • David Patchell-Evans (GoodLife Fitness Owner)
  • Silken Laumann (Olympian & Motivational Speaker)
  • Wendy Lisogar-Cocchia & Sergio Cocchia (Pacific Autism Family Network Co-Founders)
  • The room was a sea of green as all the guests received a special LED green light-up necklace to highlight their generous contribution towards Pacific Autism families
  • Parents of individuals of those with Autism came on stage to emotionally thank each awarded organization for allowing their families the opportunity to participate in society in ways they weren’t ever able to before
  • Global BC News Director, Jill Krop, emceed the event with the help of Man About Town, Fred Lee conducting the Live Auction. Prizes Included:
  • 3-night trip to LA with a VIP Jimmy Kimmel experience that sold for almost $11,000
  • Staycation at the Parq Vancouver, including a VIP box and on-the-field experience at a BC Lions or Vancouver Whitecaps game that saw so much furious bidding, the Parq Vancouver generously donated a 2nd package to throw in the mix
  • Round-trip private jet experience with AirSprint Private Aviation to Mission Hill Family Estate for a private all expenses paid wine & dine that went for over $10,000


“Today feels like history-in-the-making. We’re so deeply touched by the amount of community support that came forward to help our provincial families affected by Autism,” says Pacific Autism Family Network Co-Founder, Wendy Lisogar-Cocchia. “We hope that by highlighting these incredible community initiatives to our 1,000 guests, we’ve inspired others to introduce new programs and services that will allow for further inclusion for absolutely everyone.”


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Photos by Jay Shaw Photography


Laura Lombardi

Vice President, Pacific Autism Family Network

E:  P: 604-657-8944

Follow Pacific Autism Family Network
Twitter/Facebook/Instagram: @pacificautism  

About Pacific Autism Family Network

Pacific Autism Family Network (PAFN) is a first-in-North America charitable organization with a mandate to serve the lifespan needs of individuals and families affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder and all related disorders. Founded by parents Wendy Lisogar-Cocchia and Sergio Cocchia, with the vision to break down barriers to access across the province, PAFN has collaborated with over 60 organizations to bring together essential lifespan needs for those affected by Autism, all within one network. In late 2016, PAFN opened their first location – the 60,000 sq.ft GoodLife Fitness Family Autism Hub in Richmond, and will open smaller satellites in other areas of B.C. in 2017. The network ensures that all British Columbians have access to state-of-the-art resources for assessment, treatment, education-support and research, providing a “one-stop-shop” for families looking for help in their navigation of available information and services.