On Saturday evening I volunteered at Miami Beach’s W hotel. It was for a non-profit called the Juice Foundation. Unsure of its purpose, when my dear friend Kelly Gold asked me to help out, how could I resist. After all, giving back is my passion in life.
I came to learn that Juice Foundation was started by two notable angels: Juwan Howard and his gorgeous, fashionable wife Jenine. Juice was founded after Juwan’s best friend and pseudo brother “Juice” was diagnosed with stage four Cancer and given six weeks to live. They sent him away to try to save his life using alternative medicine, and “Juice” lived a year. Subsequently, Jenine had a college “sister” who most recently became sick with this lethal disease, and through Juice Foundation received holistic treatment that prolonged her life. Then she passed in August. I checked her mother in, and when she approached me, this beautiful woman told me “I am here for the fashion show, it is in honor of my daughter.” Chills ran down my spine, and I had to take a deep breath to fight back the tears.
The early evening, held from five to eight p.m., was not age discriminatory and catered toward children and adults. Guests entered to a Halloween heaven, full of healthy snacks including Vita-Coco. Then guests headed into the main ballroom, where there was a major stage set up, sponsored by Saks Fifth Avenue. Elyze Held, fashion stylist extraordinaire, styled all of the children who would be modeling for the crowd, and it was not an easy crowd! From Juwan and Jenine Howard, Jolinda Wade (Dwyane’s mother), Savannah Brinson (wife of Lebron James), retired coach Ron Rothstein, Tracy McGrady, Udonis Haslem and Ray Allen to society members Claudia Brod, Jackie Mansfield, Kelly and Peter Gold, Violet Camacho, Lyndsey Grimes Cooper and Matthew Cooper…. Lets just say, the fashion show where the athletes children along with Cancer patients from Sylvester Cancer Center modeled (or danced) down the grand runway, had the whole audience laughing and cheering for approximately thirty minutes.
These kids all have insane swag, I was impressed. Lorenzo Ice-Tea Thomas, afternoon radio personality of 99 JAMZ MC’d the evening along with actress Aisha Hinds. Their chemistry equaled magic. At the end of the event, through ticket sales, silent and live auction, Juice Foundation raised thousands of dollars to help Cancer patients in need get the help they desire. #priceless!
***Juice Foundation’s mission is to promote a healthy life style and to support non-traditional and traditional healing, providing grants to individuals seeking alternative care and never advise. The largest recipient of our fundraising goes to the Sylvester Center. The vendors of the evening were all organic and healthy, keeping in line with Juice Foundation’s mission.