Throughout his iconic career, Mr. Manilow has inspired and helped millions through his music and gracious philanthropic gestures. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Manilow arranged that for every US dollar donated by his fans to the American Red Cross, he would personally and through the Manilow Fund for Health and Hope match the donation, tripling the original amount. In less than 48 hours, the fund donated $150,000. In 2011, Manilow visited Joplin, Missouri six months after a tornado swept through the city destroying one-third of it and donated $300,000 to its only high school to restore the musical program and instruments that were lost. These are just two examples of Mr. Manilow’s desire to help those in need.
Dream Foundation itself has also been lucky enough to work with Mr. Manilow several times serving final dreams. Whether the dream constituted meeting him, receiving a phone call from him, attending a concert or getting autographed memorabilia, Mr. Manilow was kind, helpful, and always eager to make memorable experiences for those in need. Most recently, 88 year old Imogene from Orland Park, Illinois who was losing her battle with breast cancer desperately wanted to meet her idol, Barry Manilow and be “near enough to hold his hand.” Dream Foundation sent her, her daughter and her son-in-law to one of his Las Vegas shows, arranged VIP seating, as well as a special meet and greet backstage. Imogene said she felt like royalty! It was a beautiful goodbye.
Barry Manilow’s continued support and dedication to Dream Foundation and others made him an easy choice for this year’s Founder’s Humanitarian Award! “Without the years of support of advocates like Barry, we simply would have the resources needed to touch the lives of the families we serve," says Dream Foundation Founder/President, Thomas Rollerson. "Barry's philanthropic efforts with Dream Foundation and beyond are testament to his compassionate heart and desire to make a difference. He clearly leads by example, embodying a message of hope and determination to make a lasting impact in the lives of others."
On October 26, 2013, the Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara, California will be transformed into a dream-like world as celebrities, VIP’s, and distinguished guests enjoy a night of heartwarming dream stories, unparalleled entertainment and innovative cuisine. The Celebration of Dreams Gala is an event imperative to Dream Foundation’s existence; generating nearly one-third of the foundation’s entire annual operating budget and therefore allowing for the fulfillment of thousands of final dreams. The foundation anticipates serving more than 5,000 final dreams this year.
About Dream Foundation
The mission of Dream Foundation is to enhance the quality of life for individuals and their families facing a life threatening illness by fulfilling a heart’s final wish. The first and largest national wish-granting organization for adults, Dream Foundation enhances the quality of life for individuals and their families battling life-threatening illness. Dream recipients are those individuals who have been given a year or less of expectancy. Dreams range from the basic need items, like a working stove, to bedside reunions and meaningful experiences with children and loved ones.
Founded in 1994, Dream Foundation serves more than 2,500 dreams each year and relies on a network of volunteers, sponsors and individual donors.
For more information, visit www.dreamfoundation.org or call (805) 564-2131.