Famed-photographer Davis Factor & Community Leaders Michelle and Udi Gannot to be Honored; Chai Lifeline Young Leaders Jenny and Moshe Buchman to Launch Buchman Birthday Initiative at November 5 Gala
Several hometown heroes will be on hand at The Saban Theater in Beverly Hills on Monday, November 5 at 6 p.m., as Chai Lifeline West Coast celebrates 18 years of providing social, emotional, and financial support to children and families suffering from pediatric illness or loss at its annual Legacy of Hope Gala. This vital support, in the form of professional case management, insurance advocacy, counseling, creative arts and other types of therapeutic services for all family members, comes at absolutely no cost to patients or their relatives.
Joining Chai Lifeline West Coast in celebrating its “chai” year and this year’s Gala theme – Dream. Hope. Inspire. – is renowned photographer, Davis Factor, who has spent the past year capturing and documenting the brave journeys of Chai Lifeline children. He is the recipient of Chai Lifeline’s Vision of Hope Award. Factor, the great-grandson of legendary cosmetics pioneer Max Factor, is co-founder of Smashbox Cosmetics and Smashbox Studios. Factor initially became involved with Chai Lifeline through his family’s Los Angeles-based organization, The Max Factor Family Foundation. His stunning photos – depicting the power of Chai Lifeline to transform the lives of seriously ill children by encouraging them to keep dreaming – will be exhibited at the Gala.
“These children, their families are fantastic. This is probably my proudest moment as a photographer. I have never worked on something so beautiful and amazing in my life. I’m just proud to be a part of Chai Lifeline and to be able to give back to the community in this way.”
Michelle and Udi Gannot will receive the Caring Hearts Award for their selfless dedication to improving the lives of Chai Lifeline children. Despite suffering the devastating loss of their own precious three-year-old daughter, Daniella, to cancer in 2011, the Gannots sought to repay the kindness and support they received from Chai Lifeline by founding an annual toy drive in Daniella’s memory to benefit other Chai Lifeline kids. Nearly eight years later, thousands of toys have been distributed to countless Chai Lifeline children, and along with those toys, a message of hope and happiness.
The Gala will also feature the launch of the Chai Lifeline Buchman Birthday Initiative. Founded by Chai Lifeline Young Leaders, Jenny and Moshe Buchman, this new program will ensure that children and families confronting and living with pediatric illness do not miss out on celebrating important milestones such as birthdays while battling adversity. Under the new Birthday Initiative, Chai Lifeline children will receive cakes, balloons, and gifts, and be treated to special experiences on their birthday. Going forward, the program will enable individuals to sponsor a birthday, bar or bat mitzvah, or any other special occasion, as well as to make financial contributions to the Birthday Initiative in lieu of gifts.
“This year’s Legacy of Hope Gala is particularly significant as we mark 18 years – the numerical equivalent of the Hebrew word ‘chai’ meaning ‘life’ – of serving one of the most vulnerable populations in the West Coast Jewish community,” said Randi Grossman, MPH, Director of Chai Lifeline West Coast. “Each of our honorees are truly special, as they epitomize what it means to give back to their community – whether with their time, talent or resources. These individuals are unsung heroes. This year, I am proud and honored to pay tribute to them for their sacrifices and dedication.”
To reserve a seat, place a journal ad, or learn more about the Chai Lifeline West Coast Legacy of Hope Gala, visit wcgala.org.