Fountain House — the most widely replicated evidence-based model for people living with mental illness in the world — celebrated its 12th Annual Fountain House Fall Fête on Monday, October 7, 2019 with cocktails and dinner at the Racquet and Tennis Club. The event serves to introduce an audience of prominent leaders to Fountain House’s comprehensive mental health model and its mission to fight the stigma associated with serious mental illness.
Event Chairs Jane and Gregory Baecher, Svetlana and Frank Beane, Angela and Michael Clofine, Byrdie and Sean Fay, Jeremy L. Goldstein, Florence Peyrelongue, Lil Phillips, Katie Tozer, and Katie Zorn were joined by prominent guests, including Bailey and Rick Aldrich, Ralph Aquila, MD, Alex Berluti, Jamie and Richie Birkenhead, Jill Cohen, Andrew Davis, Chiara de Rege, Tracy and Jim Florack, Victor Geraci, Mark Gilbertson, Todd Goergen, Jose Luis Guerra, Lorna and Larry Graev, Paige and Matt Guest, Leslie Heaney, Shannon Henderson, Bill Hilburn, Hilary Koyfman, Tracy Kearns, Alice Kim and David Cynn, Frances Laserson, Cindy and Richard Leibovitch, Jennifer and Ted Liang, Kamie Lightburn, Stephanie and Jim Loeffler, Jack Lynch, Catherine and Donald Marron, William Marron, Carolyn MacKenzie, Noel Momsen, Jennifer Oken, Noelle and Mark Penna, Lucy Phillips and Pierre Yared, Arlene and Chester Salomon, Greg Schmitt, Frances Schultz, Linda and Bao Truong, Tara Tunney, Mary and Guy van Pelt, Johanna von Braun and Ashwin Vasan, MD, PhD, Christina and Ned Wood, and Franny and Richard Zorn.
The Associates Committee presented the Fountain House Advocacy Award to activist and musician Moby. After the release of his first single, “Go” in 1991 (listed as one of Rolling Stone Magazine’s best records of all time), Moby’s records have gone on to sell over 20,000,000 copies worldwide. In May of 2019, Moby released his latest book, Then It Fell Apart, in which the artist spoke openly about his suicide attempts and experience living with mental illness.
“I am very happy to support Fountain House, and to be honored at this year’s Fall Fête. Fountain House’s mission is to help people with serious mental illness realize their potential as coworkers, students, neighbors, friends…as people. To combat the social isolation and poor outcomes this population faces resonates deeply with me. As someone who has experienced isolation, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse, I know firsthand the power of community and focusing on our strengths, rather than diagnosis, can provide.” remarked Moby.
Tanya Rivero, Anchor and Correspondent at CBS News was the Master of Ceremonies for the evening. Rivero has a long history interviewing leaders in the world of business, politics, and culture.
Fountain House member Oneil Mahoney, whose education at Muhlenberg College was temporarily interrupted because of his illness, received a Danny Zorn Scholarship Award. He completed the Fountain House College Re-Entry program which helps academically engaged 18 to 30-year-old college students, who withdraw from their studies due to mental health challenges, return to college and successfully reach their educational goals. Oneil is currently enrolled in Borough of Manhattan Community College where he is undertaking coursework in biology. He is also employed as a lab assistant and supports the data collection and research on the efficacy of the Fountain House model in New York City.
Fountain House operates the largest and most successful supported education program in the U.S, with 77% of members completing their degrees as compared to just 30% within the general population living with mental illness.
Fountain House empowers people with serious mental illness to live and thrive in society. Every day, hundreds of people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depression, come to Fountain House to contribute their talents, learn new skills, access opportunities, and build friendships. Alongside staff, they operate award-winning programs in the areas of employment, education, wellness, and housing and work as partners to perform the functions that keep our community going. Founded in 1948, Fountain House is the most widely replicated evidence-based model for people living with mental illness in the world with over 300 model programs serving over 100,000 people throughout the U.S. and in more than 30 countries. Fountain House is the first mental health organization to receive the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, the largest and most prestigious recognition of humanitarian efforts.
CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta was honored for his dedication to humanitarian causes at the Americares Airlift Benefit on Oct. 5. Dr. Gupta was the recipient of the Bob and Leila Macauley Humanitarian Spirit Award, which honors outstanding individuals who exemplify extraordinary courage and commitment to humanitarian endeavors.
Hosted by Tony Goldwyn and Erica Hill and featuring a special performance by actor and musician Jackie Cruz, the event raised over $2.8 million. More than 800 guests attended the fundraiser held in the J.P. Morgan Chase Hangarat Westchester County Airport celebrating 40 years of Americares health programs.
Alvia and Medhi Mahmud, James and Roberta Conroy and Ali and Pat Fels co-chaired the successful event, produced by Rafanelli Events. Jane Musky and Tony Goldwyn served as honorary co-chairs. Notable attendees included Orange is the New Black star Selenis Leyva, American Ballet Theatre Dancer Courtney Lavine, author and Christie’s auctioneer Lydia Fenet and model Alex Lundqvist.
The inspirational evening culminated with a spectacular sendoff as a group of supporters embarked on a 24-hour journey to the Dominican Republic, where Americares supports over 100 health facilities including hospitals and health centers.
Americares is a health-focused relief and development organization that saves lives and improves health for people affected by poverty or disaster with life-changing health programs, medicine and medical supplies. Since its founding 40 years ago, Americares has provided more than $17 billion in aid to 164 countries, including the United States.
Photographs by Alex Ostasiewicz & Getty Images (Americares)