A week of wows: helping kids in need at two stylish soirées

By Erica Corsano

Gala season is in full-swing in the Northeast which means bubbles, bidding, and black-tie getups. Amazing style-spying and dizzying dance floor action aside, at the heart of this very important season, are causes that are changing lives across the globe.

Education org Flying Kites celebrated 10 years of providing schooling, clothing, nutritious food and more to vulnerable children in Kenya, raising a whopping 1.2 million dollars at their anniversary gala on Thursday evening. All proceeds will go towards the expansion of their Leadership Academy and Teacher Training Center.

Co-founder and executive director, Leila de Bruyne gave a heartwarming and humbling speech with a special shout-out to Alex + Ani founder Carolyn Rafaelian, who attended the event with other A+A staffers. The brand is responsible for funding the building of Flying Kites’ new school and training center.

The self-made female billionaire (and recent Forbes Magazine cover subject) commemorated the anniversary party by announcing a matching gift challenge; pledging to match all donations made on the night (up to 250,000 USD).

Melissa Steffy, Erica Corsano, Kennedy Elsey, and Jeff Brandli at Flying Kites. 

Melissa Steffy, Erica Corsano, Kennedy Elsey, and Jeff Brandli at Flying Kites. 

Since 2007, Flying Kites has been serving some of the most vulnerable children in East Africa through the Flying Kites Leadership Academy. In January 2018, the organization’s model school will be partnering with the district's most impoverished primary schools to help address barriers to learning and provide training and ongoing coaching to teachers in neighboring schools and communities.

 

Learn more at www.flyingkites.org.


On Saturday evening, another Boston-based organization for kiddos also celebrated providing access to educational programs at the Boston Children’s Museum Wonderball, held at the museum.

Since 1913, over 25 million children (and their families) have been welcomed to play and learn via Boston Children’s Museum various exhibits and programs.

Over 420 gala-goers celebrated the institution’s remarkable work raising over $600,000 in support.

Wonderball co-chairs – Philip Gordon, Julie Gordon, Aisha Al Riyam, Al Wadhah Al Wadawi, Janna O’Neill, Sean O’Neill   Photo credit: Matt Teuten

Wonderball co-chairs – Philip Gordon, Julie Gordon, Aisha Al Riyam, Al Wadhah Al Wadawi, Janna O’Neill, Sean O’Neill

Photo credit: Matt Teuten

Each year, close to 600,000 visitors experience the wonders of this incredible community resource, and nearly half of those visitors rely on generously discounted or free admission.

Proceeds from the event will support the very programs that provide access to the Museum, regardless of economic, physical or developmental challenges.

Learn more at www.bostonchildrensmuseum.org.