After decades of dinner dances overlooking the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, the Child Center of NY —a 59-year-old nonprofit serving about 17,000 children in Queens —held its first gala in Manhattan on April 18.
Hosted by Natalie Morales, the news anchor of NBC’s “Today Show,” the event at Gustavino’s drew more than 400 people.
The event raised more than $500,000, which helps to support the at-risk children served by the center that was founded in 1953.
The center, which is based in Woodside, runs programs at 70 school and community spots around the borough.
It focuses on a number of issues, including early childhood education, individual and family counseling, child abuse prevention and youth development.
“We want to make Manhattan’s philanthropic community aware that most of the at-risk kids in New York City live in the outer boroughs,” Child Center President Richard Jay said of his group’s decision to move the annual event across the East River. “We work in some of the most impoverished and high-risk neighborhoods, like Jamaica, Far Rockaway and elmhurst — places many people tend not to think about.”
The event honored Jack Bransfield Jr., president of Roslyn Savings Bank; Gregory Shufro, principal and senior managing director at Shufro, Rose & Co., and James Pi, chairman of Victoria Cruises.