Lights. Camera. Fashion!
Nearly 200 patrons were treated to a very special runway show, where fashion met fundraising. The Great Falls Friends and Neighbors Scholarship Fund (GFFNSF) hosted the 2016 Spring Fashion Show at Bloomingdale’s Tysons Corner Center in McLean, which featured a champagne brunch, raffle, silent auction and shopping opportunity in addition to the fashion show itself, all for charity.
The Bloomingdale’s event was GFFNSF’s first fashion show fundraiser and was a stylish success, raising $25,000 in one day for the scholarships. The recipients are Virginia women over the age of 25 who are working to complete their college educations. A scholarship is also presented to a dance student at George Mason University in the name of a club founder, Bette Carter. By promoting higher education, GFFNSF encourages scholarship recipients to reach their full potential, improving the quality of their lives and that of the community at large.
The festivities included remarks from Channel 9 news anchor, Andrea Roane. A former school teacher, Roane is renowned for her strong stance on empowering women and her fervent commitment to women’s health issues. Ricki Harvey, President of the GFFNSF Board, spoke about the scholarship fund and the importance of educating women. Past scholarship recipients, Martina Atabong and Hela Baer explained how the scholarships they received changed their lives and those of their families. Atabong is the single mother of a young son and the first in her family to attend college. Baer moved to the United States from Israel at the age of eight. Her mandatory military experience influenced her decision to attend George Mason University and study Conflict Analysis and Resolution.
Eighteen models participated in the show, including Bloomingdale’s professional models and members of Great Falls Friends and Neighbors (GFFN). Four grandchildren of GFFN members, ranging in age from 3 to 14 years, also walked the runway in Bloomingdale’s fashions.
The GFFN Scholarship Fund, Inc., started in 1983, is one of GFFN’s major philanthropies. Some of the top sponsors that helped make Sunday's fundraiser possible were The Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation, The Rosenfeld Family Foundation, The Diamond Dream Foundation, INOVA Health Services and United Bank.