GRADUATION GALA 2017 RECAP

On Wednesday, June 7th, 2017, we held our Graduation Gala at One World Observatory. The goal of the evening was to raise funds that go directly to impacting the lives of children around the world through education. We’ve currently rebuilt 162 schools in 10 countries, serving over 99,500 students and impacted 613,000 community members.

Views from One World Observatory {Photos: Ryan Scherb L and Marisa McGrody R}

Our founder, Petra Nemcova, hosted the event and kept our guests engaged with her high energy and passion.

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HHF founder, Petra Nemcova. {Photo: Marisa McGrody}

The night kicked off with an informative video that showcased the massive amount of natural disasters around the world and the action we take to ensure that children have schools to return to.

Petra also hosted the award ceremony that celebrated our devoted partners. The award winners included Tony Robbins with the Lifetime Achievement Award and All Hands Volunteers with the Honored Partners Award.

<> at One World Trade Center on June 7, 2017 in New York City.
David Campbell, Ramzi Musallam, Petra Nemcova and Tony Robbins at One World Trade Center on June 7, 2017 in New York City.

Tony Robbins inspired everyone with his touching acceptance speech and devotion to Happy Hearts Fund’s mission.

Tony Robbins accepting the Lifetime Achievement Award. {Photo: Ryan Scherb}
Tony Robbins accepting the Lifetime Achievement Award. {Photo: Ryan Scherb}

The exciting auction event was hosted by Auctioneer Simon de Pury. Some of the auction items included: work from artists Bosco Sodi and Helidon Xhixha as well as special tickets to U2 and John Legend concerts. The guests, with their heart-shaped paddles, eagerly auctioned for the various items to support our important cause.

Simon DP RS
Simon De Pury, auctioneer extraordinaire. {Photo: Ryan Scherb}

The highlight of the night was when our special guest Edna, who was the chancellor of the night, took the stage. Edna is a student at one of our happy schools that was built after a typhoon hit the Philippines. Edna shined brightly as she sang her heart out to the audience and urged them to sing along with her. She represented the importance of cultivating children’s education and interests after disasters strike and communities are destroyed.

Edna Candelaria, HHF student and Petra Nemcova
Edna Candelaria, HHF student and Petra Nemcova {Photo: Ryan Scherb}

To complete an amazing evening Just Kool gave a great performance that got everyone off their feet. The group performed some of their most famous hits like, “Celebration”, “Get Down On It” and “Fresh”.

Just Kool2
Mohamed Moretta and Just Kool. {Photo: Ryan Scherb}

DJ Cassidy hosted our after-party that literally brought the house down. He keep guests dancing all night long and enjoying the festivities, while spinning some great hits.

DJ Cassidy in his element. {Photo: Ryan Scherb}
DJ Cassidy in his element. {Photo: Ryan Scherb}

Thanks to everyone who attended as we were able to exceed our financial goals! We raised over $2.1 million dollars, that will go towards supporting communities impacted by natural disasters so that children can grow and learn in happy and safe, resilient schools.