NEW YORK (November 30, 2010) – The 2010 UNICEF Snowflake Ball will take place on November 30 at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City. In its seventh year, the black-tie gala will celebrate the lighting of the UNICEF Snowflake and honor those individuals who have made key contributions to UNICEF's mission to save and improve children's lives worldwide. During the evening, UNICEF will present the Spirit of Compassion Award to Olivia Harrison.
"We are proud to honor Olivia Harrison's commitment to child survival and UNICEF's mission to do whatever it takes to save the lives of children around the world," said U.S. Fund for UNICEF President and CEO Caryl Stern. "With the help of dedicated individuals like Olivia, UNICEF is closer to its mission of reaching a day when zero children die from preventable causes."
The U.S. Fund for UNICEF is honored to present this year's Audrey Hepburn Humanitarian Award to Francoise Gruloos-Ackermans, UNICEF Representative in Haiti. Francoise will accept the award – which is named for UNICEF's legendary Goodwill Ambassador - on behalf of all the UNICEF staff members who quickly and fearlessly responded to Haiti's unprecedented catastrophe earlier this year and continue to do so. The remarkable dedication of Francoise Gruloos-Ackermans and of all her staff in Haiti continues to make a critical and lasting difference in the lives of the country's children.
The 2010 Snowflake Ball will feature stunning decor by HGTV star and award-winning architectural and interior designer Vern Yip—UNICEF’s newest ambassador—including 22,000 twinkling lights to represent the number of children under five years old that die each day from preventable causes. The evening will feature cuisine by UNICEF Ambassador Marcus Samuelsson and Wolfgang Puck, and special performances by Fistful of Mercy and ELEW. A live auction will be led by Hugh Hildesley of Sotheby's.
The majestic UNICEF Snowflake—which hangs over the intersection of Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in New York City through autumn and winter—marks the beginning of the holiday giving season and serves as a reminder of UNICEF's commitment to reach a day when zero children die from preventable causes. The UNICEF Snowflake, donated by the Stonbely Family Foundation, was engineered and entirely handcrafted by designer Ingo Maurer and his team in Germany and is 23 feet in diameter, over 28 feet in height, weighs more than 3,300 pounds and uses 16,000 Baccarat crystal prisms.
The UNICEF Snowflake Ball, presented by Baccarat, will be chaired by Claudia Lebenthal and Christine Stonbely with Barbara Bush and Maggie Betts serving as Gala Junior Chairs. Town & Country Editor-at-Large Pamela Fiori and internationally recognized interior designer Charlotte Moss will serve as UNICEF Snowflake Project Chairs.
The evening will be attended by notable UNICEF supporters, including Tea Leoni, Lauren Bush, David Lauren, Pamela Fiori, Wolfgang Puck, Marcus Samuelsson, Steve Van Zandt, Bryant Gumbel, Hilary Gumbel, Gillian Hearst Simonds, Kathy and Ken Chenault (CEO of American Express), Arthur Sulzberger, Robert Diamond (CEO of Barclays - UK based), Pamela Joyner, Marissa Mayer and Zack Bogue, Sean Ferrer and many others.
UNICEF has saved more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization in the world. Working in over 150 countries, UNICEF provides children with health care, clean water, nutrition, education, emergency relief, and more. The U.S. Fund for UNICEF supports UNICEF's work through fundraising, advocacy, and education in the United States.