*Jenesse Center created Hope for a Perfect World with its 2011 Silver Rose Weekend. The impact is going around the world with media coverage from Los Angeles to Austalia. The worldwide opportunity to join the movement of creating Hope is still open with a special online charity opportunity. Jenesse’s online auction is up and live now. To bid on auction items to support the organization, visit www.charitybuzz.com/jenesse. Online auction closes Wednesday, May 4th, 12noon EST.
Chaired by Academy Award winning actress Halle Berry, the 31st Annual Silver Rose Gala & Auction, held on Sunday, April 17, 2011, was packed with magical moments including a sweet little puppy named “Hope” that drew an $11,000 bid in the live auction.
The theme for the 2011 Silver Rose was “Hope for a Perfect World.” Avis Frazier-Thomas, Jenesse Board President said, “We chose the theme ‘Hope for a Perfect World’ because ultimately a world without domestic violence is our greatest hope. It is what we aspire to in all our efforts; one person at a time, one family at a time, one day at a time, we would like to believe that we are closer to that ideal today, than we were yesterday. ” The event was an effort to provide hope to those at the end of their rope. Performances such as Jonathan DeCuir and Vessels with “I Choose to Live” resonated, given the recent tragedies in the headlines of a young New York mother who drove herself and children off a bridge into the Hudson River from despair caused by a domestic violence situation. Her 10 year old son who escaped remembered her last words being “Oh my God, I made a mistake”. Hope for a Perfect World is the effort to extend a rope to those drowning in despair.
Guests included Christina Milian, Rutina Wesley, Ruben Santiago-H udson and Ty Pennington from ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The gala entertainment lineup deserved Broadway acclaim, including the masterful triple threat mega-talent Jamie Foxx as Emcee and the sexy, soulful Robin Thicke who performed a mini-concert that drove the audience to near frenzy. Other amazing moments included the culturally rich and artistically poignant live performances of actresses Salli Richardson-Whitfield as Lena Horne, Taraji Henson as Eartha Kitt and Wendy Raquel Robinson as Josephine Baker in tribute to the What A Little Love Can Do Project.
The 2011 Silver Rose event honored the “What A Little Love Can Do Project“, the brainchild of Halle Berry, the project was initiated to enhance the living and educational facilities for women, children and men needing to escape the dangers of domestic violence. A major much-needed renovation project of shelter apartment spaces, with the devoted help of three top designers Patrick Delanty, David Brian Sanders and Lindsay Jackson. The apartment spaces are named after noted women of strength including Lena Horne, Eartha Kitt, Josephine Baker and many others who history celebrates as great achievers and overcomers of adversity and their ability to elevate and excel beyond life’s challenges and circumstances.
There wasn’t a dry eye in the room after the soul-stirring performance by gospel vocalist DeWayne Woods. The performance ushered in the award tribute to Jenesse’s youngest honoree ever, Bryson Rouzan Thomas. Rouzan-Thomas was presented with the Trailblazer of Hope Award. Actress Tatyana Ali was part of the award tribute and shared emails penned by young Rouzan-Thomas over the years reflecting his ongoing efforts to advance his cause to rally his generation to “change the conversation” about relationship violence and say out loud that it is “not OK”. Although only 17, Bryson Rouzan-Thomas is a longtime volunteer for Jenesse and has made it his mission to educate youth about the dangers of relationship violence. He was one of the original counselors for Camp Jenesse, a summer enrichment program for the children who live at Jenesse. He has hosted large book drives, organized holiday parties for the families, and filmed a PSA on domestic violence that can be viewed on the Jenesse teen Angel Blog (http://jenesseteenangels.blogspot.com/).
Rouzan-Thomas also headed a project with his fellow Loyola classmates to renovate a two-bedroom, two-bath apartment at one of Jenesse’s residential facilities. A senior at Loyola High School, Rouzan-Thomas has taken a leadership position among his peers, encouraging them, and their parents, to volunteer at Jenesse and to help make a real and lasting change in the lives of families in crisis.
Jenesse Silver Rose Gala & Auction Chair Pat Greene said, “Bryson has been one of Jenesse’s most dedicated Teen Angels. I have been so inspired watching him build on what others have done before him. He continues to amaze me in the ways he is always expanding his volunteer work at Jenesse.”
The Silver Rose Weekend continued the next day with the 3rd Annual Halle Berry Golf Classic at the Wilshire Country Club on Monday, April 18th. Hosted by Halle Berry, participants included golf legend Renee Powell, Kevin Farley, Dennis Haysbert, Christina Milian, Glynn Turman, Mike Phillips, Flex Alexander, John Salley, Terri Seymour and many more.
Jenesse Silver Rose Golf Chair, Dr. Othella Owens, said, “Thank you to all the participants, sponsors and supporters who came out to enjoy a good game of golf and raise funds for the important work Jenesse Center does to save families in our community and around the world. Together we extend a rope to those who are drowning in violent circumstances and need hope and help.”
Sponsors for the 2011 Silver Rose Weekend included Verizon, Verizon Wireless, Grey Goose, Xerox, BET Networks, Nestle USA, Good Works, Northrop Grumman, SEIU-ULTCW, Southwest, Avis Frazier-Thomas, Esq, NBC Universal Media Works, Brotherhood Crusade, The Nielsen Company, Castillo Charitable Foundation, Los Angeles Times, Cooperative of American Physicians, Kaiser Permanente and Viniar Family Foundation.
Jenesse Center is a national non-profit organization that provides a holistic, comprehensive program to nurture victimized families back to a place of mental, financial, physical and emotional well-being. For more information on Jenesse Center at 323.299.9496, ext. 103 or visit the website at www.jenesse.org.
About Jenesse Center
Founded in 1980, Jenesse Center Inc. provides culturally sensitive programs, services and outreach efforts to families by providing a comprehensive, centralized base of support and services that ensures a transition from immediate crisis to stability and self-sufficiency.
Housing women and children from 30 days up to two years through its 156-bed emergency and transitional shelters, Jenesse also provides a variety of support services to more than 1,000 families annually including mental health counseling, independent life skills classes, computer training, job referrals, after school programs for children, field trips, tutoring and legal assistance offering assistance with obtaining restraining orders for domestic violence victims.