Over 650 guests gathered during the 13th Annual Diamond Ball on Saturday, where nearly $2 million were raised to benefit the patients and families at Nicklaus Children's Hospital. The event, which took place at the JW Marriott Marquis in Miami, was chaired by community pillars Juliana and Alex Krys and honored philanthropist Michael Fux for his commendable work helping underserved children in South Florida.
This year's Diamond Ball highlighted the topic of mental health in children, and the urgent need to raise funds and awareness to provide patients in our community and beyond with compassionate and comprehensive intervention, care and coping skills throughout their journey of healing. The emotionally charged evening, featuring Barbara and Jack Nicklaus (after whom the hospital is proudly named) brought together physicians, caregivers and donors who heard our patient stories, opened their hearts and gave generously to address the serious mental health crisis affecting our youth.
One in four children will experience a mental health issue with the statistic climbing every year. Suicide is now the second leading cause of death amongst teenagers and we cannot deny that there is a mental health crisis and that it's affecting too many of our children," said Juliana Krys, Diamond Ball chair and member of Nicklaus Children’s Hospital Foundation’s Board of Directors. "We desperately need to change this and only we can only do it with the help of our community.
We are thankful to all our donors and corporate supporters for an unforgettable evening where our community came together to help our patients and families dealing with issues related to mental health. The event led by Juliana and Alex is a true example of what our community can do to make a difference in the lives of our patients," said Michelle Boggs, president of Nicklaus Children's Hospital Foundation.
The event honored a long-time champion of children, Michael Fux, with his induction to the Ambassador David M. Walters International Pediatric Hall of Fame - created in 1986 to recognize and honor individuals who have demonstrated a passionate commitment to ensuring the health and happiness of children everywhere. Past honorees include Beyoncé Knowles, Dwyane Wade, Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Juanes, Romero Britto and Walt Disney, among others.
Michael Fux is a successful entrepreneur who has had a transformative impact in the mattress industry and an automobile collector whose real passion is bringing cheer to sick children and their families. Thanks to his generosity, the Michael Fux Family Center opened its door ten years ago, offering a home away from home for our patients and families. The center provides families with a library, game room, movie theatre, kitchen with a dining room and lounge, a cardio gym, and free laundry services as well as hair styling and massages.
Fux also hosts an annual holiday party for more than 400 of our most underserved families. Each year, making sure every child in attendance leaves the party with a gift of their choosing, knowing that may be the only present they receive that year.
Michael Fux is a long-time Nicklaus Children's supporter that has made his mission to help children in need and we are honored to recognize his dedication with the induction to the Hall of Fame," said Boggs.
The event was made possible thanks to the generous support of Perry Ellis International, City National Bank, Robins & Morton, Stearns Weaver Miller, CVS Pharmacy, Greenberg Traurig P.A, MBF Healthcare Partners, the Hometown Foundation, West Coast University, Duty Free Americas, Inc, Polen Capital, Wells Fargo, JW Marriott Marquis Miami, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Florida, CNN Español, Ocean Drive Magazine, Miami Herald and Selecta Magazine.