Now that we have fully recovered, we thought we would share the amazing night that we had last Thursday at the Ronald McDonald House Girl’s Night Out. The Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte out-did themselves once again by providing a night of Glamour and Giving at the Filmore for 500 women. We were so honored to be the presenting sponsor for the second year in a row for them since they are so near and dear to our hearts. The Ronald McDonald House was such an integral part of Isabella’s treatment over the years and so much of her treatment was made possible through their homes in New York and Philadelphia.
There is just something magical about getting all these women together for a great cause. Food, drinks, silent auction items, high end fashion raffles, fashion shows and most importantly touching stories from different women who have stayed at the Ronald McDonald House. We all loved watching these women walk the runway, some hand in hand with their own children as we all cried and clapped in amazement of these families and the organization that supported them.
The event carved out some time for us to introduce ourselves to the audience as well. We are so proud of our new video that was created and we were excited to premiere it that night to them all. The video does a wonderful job of really showing people who we are and what we do. Needless to say, there was not a dry eye in the house. By the time that Erin Santos was announced, the crowd was on their feet. It was a touching moment for us all.
This year there was also a new exciting addition to the event with the first annual Isabella Santos Award. They came to us with the idea of presenting an Isabella award to woman in the community who possessed the same values as Isabella. The hope of the award was to reward someone who lives a life with the same dreams and aspirations of Isabella and who is really trying to make a difference in the world. We were so thrilled about the idea and were excited as we started to see the nominations come in.
A couple of days before the nomination period ended, a beautiful nomination came across to us and we were taken back by it. It was a no brainer for us at the Isabella Santos Foundation because we were very familiar with the incredible lady. Many of you knew Isabella’s best friend, Chrissy Bush from Erin’s writings over the years. Chrissy is such an inspiration to many of us because of her selfless giving. Her quiet giving has blown us away over the years from afar. We have watched her get up at 5am for 7 years to cook for the homeless on Saturday mornings, she volunteers each week at the free health clinic to assist in providing medical care for those in need, she fosters animals who need homes, she runs a diabetes camp in the summer for children and the list goes on and on. The best thing about Chrissy is that she never tells you that she does these things. She does them because she honestly just has an amazing heart and wants no recognition for it. And let’s not forget the thing that has touched all of us at ISF the most.. her love of Isabella. She knew Isabella’s story was not going to end well but she still opened her heart to her and provided her with comfort, love and support like she were her own daughter.
The best part of giving the award to Chrissy was the complete surprise that it was that evening. Chrissy probably wouldn’t of even showed up that night if she caught wind of us giving her this award. As Erin read out her list of accomplishments from the stage, those around her saw the emotional collapse that followed as she received a standing ovation from the audience as she came on stage to collect her award. For us there is nothing better than people like Chrissy and Isabella in this world and they should be recognized for what they provide to our communities. I know so many of us strive to be more like them each and every day.
Through all the hard work, we were so thrilled with how the event turned out and can’t wait to hear how much was raised for the house in Charlotte. 🙂 Thank you so much to the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte for allowing us to be a part of your amazing event again this year. We look forward to many more years of partnerships with you!