Everyone on board for the Caring for Kids fundraiser Saturday night (April 2nd) witnessed an outpouring of love and generosity for the kids at the Nelson Children’s Center. More than $125,000 was raised to “Give Them Wings to Fly,” the theme prompted by the event’s venue, the C. R. Smith American Airlines Museum in Fort Worth.
If you held a ticket to this event, you were treated to an evening of celebration and discovery, which combined museum exhibits (including a rare Douglas DC-3 airliner), food and drink, live and silent auctions, but most importantly, an understanding of the help, healing, and hope that happens at the Nelson Center.
Gerard Arpey, Chairman and CEO of American Airlines and an advocate for the Nelson Center, welcomed the travelers, and reminded us of the responsibility we have to the next generations to make the world a better place by serving others.
Everyone had to buckle their seatbelts when Rebekah Poling, the director of volunteers at the Nelson Center, told the heartbreaking stories of three children currently being treated at the Nelson Center: Dylan (age 8), Mario (7), and Rachel (14) [not their real names]. These children came to Nelson so troubled―their “wings” and spirits so broken―it meant starting from the ground up to build their trust with intensive therapy and education. The videos will give you an understanding of what their young lives have been like, and how they are healing and being rescued at Nelson. They are, at last, in a safe place.
Larry Mowry, the chief meteorologist at CBS11 in Dallas, served as the night’s most excellent auctioneer for the live auction. Because of the support and generosity of donors and supporters, the kids at Nelson will have renewed living spaces in which to heal. We’re adding new tile, fresh paint, sturdy furniture, fun rugs and throw pillows to all the children’s rooms, and their day room, TV rooms, and relaxation rooms will also be refurbished.
Many thanks to all our volunteers, donors, and supporters who made “Caring for Kids” take flight. You’ve helped the kids at Nelson soar to new heights!