Philanthropy Makes a Stylish Splash at NYFW

Ah, the last day of NYFW is upon us. We must bid adieu until September, but I’m sure everyone has had the pleasure of using Vine and getting a first glance view at Fashion Week. (I know I did!) Along with style admiring, I also have a huge soft spot in my heart for nonprofit and philanthropic work. I was approached by Suzanne Lindley, Co-Founder and Executive Director of YES! to regarding their PLITZS NYC Fashion Show Charity Fundraising Gala where 24 women were going to getting make overs from fashion designers and make up artists. I could not imagine a better post to end Fashion Week with this guest post.

Perhaps it looked like an ordinary fashion show at first glance. In reality, it was a combined effort of PLITZS Fashion Marketing and YES! Beat Liver Tumors.  With the sponsorship and contributions of GBK Productions, Sirtex Medical, and Genentech cancer survivors from across the country united to promote awareness about liver tumors.  The event benefited YES! Beat Liver Tumors, a nonprofit group that I helped to co-found in late 2006.   We offer support to patients and their loved ones by providing them with information, resources and treatment options in the fight against advanced cancers of the liver.
Liver tumors are a subject that few want to discuss, let alone learn that it has entered their lives. It is often handed to us like a death sentence. Living beyond those words and that stigma isn’t easy. Even more difficult than the feeling of fear is that of isolation. So coming together to share inspiration, beauty,  and encouragement was an incredible thing.
On Thursday night, February 7th, it was a grand opportunity to do just that. We put our diagnosis on the back burner. For a few short hours we forgot about cancer and the treatments that come with it. Hair and makeup transformed us. We were pampered. We were dressed.  We were in the limelight!  We took the runway by storm!
 As the night slipped excitedly by, we shared our stories not only with each other but with more than 150 guests who turned out in support. We claimed the catwalk and changed from the drudgery of blue paper gowns to the elegance of trendy and fashionable designs. The night was filled with the glitz and the glamour of the runway, but also the compassion, courage, and willpower of the survivors.  It was mingled with the generosity of designers and stylists touched by cancer and the hope and enthusiasm of those offering support. We strutted the runway, sharing that there is much living to do in spite of liver tumors and showing that not only are we doing it; we are doing it well!
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The lights have now dimmed, the runway has been removed, and we have all returned home.  With budding friendships, awakened confidence, and newfound hope the memories of a powerful night will linger with us for a lifetime to come.
Guest post written by Suzanne Lindley, Co-Founder and Executive Director of YES! 
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