“Wish Upon A Star….” Child and Orphan Care Luncheon and Fashion Show

 “Wish Upon A Star….” Theme of AMAA’s Child and Orphan Care Luncheon and Fashion Show to Help Children in Armenia and Karabagh Held in Beverly Hills Hotel

The Crystal Ballroom of the Beverly Hills Hotel was the beautiful setting of the Armenia Missionary Association of America’s (AMAA) Child and Orphan Care Luncheon and Children’s Fashion Show on March 23.  The theme of “Wish Upon A Star…” signified the important work that is being done by the AMAA to help dreams come true in Armenia and Karabagh. The Luncheon Co-Chairs, Diane Cabraloff, Gina Felikian and Sandra Kalemkiarian worked tirelessly to make every aspect of the Luncheon enjoyable for over 450 guests and supporters who attended. They warmly welcomed the guests and introduced the dynamic emcee for the day, Jacqueline Sarkissian, who is the morning news reporter for Good Day Austin on Fox 7. Before lunch, Sara Kalemkiarian Cipolla delivered an inspiring devotional and prayer about gratitude. 

The Ballroom was stunning—the beautiful flowers were generously donated by Zareh David Ghoukasian of David Z Design, who continues to support the event every year. This year’s Silent Auction was spectacular as there were more than 100 items to bid on. Nicole Nishanian and Leslie Shahinian, Silent Auction Co-Chairs, procured many amazing items, including several designer bags, beautiful jewelry, and much, much more. There were many opportunities to help the children by sponsoring a child, providing meals at the day care centers, or by purchasing a Bible for them to read. This effort was coordinated by Maro Najarian Yacoubian and Tina Segel who organized the Child Sponsorship table and encouraged everyone to make a difference in the life of a child in Armenia. Many children were sponsored at the luncheon.

Joyce Stein, National Co-Chair of the Orphan and Child Care Committee, and her daughter Tina Segel introduced a video which showed the continuing need in Armenia and how AMAA’s important ministry has helped dreams come true for thousands of Armenian children and their families.

This year, the Committee was thrilled and honored that the talented Armenian designers of Closh traveled all the way from Istanbul, Turkey to provide the fashions for our first runway show. The Closh designers, Serli Keçoğlu and Selvin Parunakyan Özgül, have deep connections with the Armenian Church and surrounding community in Turkey and have always been dedicated to the Armenian cause. They hand made all of the dresses for the show and donated their time, energy and talent to create a memorable experience for all.

As in previous years, there was a wonderful Children’s Fashion Show which was introduced and coordinated by Aleen Oruncakciel. The Fashion Show was sponsored and produced by Bloomingdale’s Sherman Oaks. The Bloomingdale’s Sherman Oaks team, along with the Committee, worked together to make the Fashion Show a complete success

Sandra Kalemkiarian, who coordinates finances and reservations, works tirelessly every year to efficiently close out the Auction. “We are grateful for the very generous donations we receive each year,” said Sandra, “and especially for all the children who were sponsored.”

The guests left the event with a bag full of goodies, including amazing nail care products donated by Jessica Vartoughian of Jessica Cosmetics, dried fruit from LindaKay Abdulian, cookies from Leslie Kevorkian, devotional books from Sandra Kalemkiarian and bookmarks from Arpi Krikorian. The children each received a gift bag donated by Ani Zakari. The beautiful bags for the goodies are donated each year by Arsine Seraydarian.

In closing, Lori Muncherian and Arsine Phillips, West Coast Child and Orphan Care Committee Co-Chairs, thanked the Chairs, the entire Committee and all the donors for their continued support of this event for the children in Armenia and explained that “We are working to help change lives and give hope for a better future one child at a time.”  

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