The Children’s Medical Research Foundation and The G-Mac Foundation hosted the seventh Annual Best of Ireland Dinner Gala on Wednesday evening, Jan 31, 2018 in New York City. The event raised a total of $850,000 for the support of international pediatric research projects across the areas of oncology, cardiology and immunology. The Gala is the largest of the several events held globally by the Foundations and takes place in partnership with The Ireland Funds. Over the course of the dinner’s 7 year history, it has raised over $4.5m.
Honorees on the evening were Adrian Jones, Managing Director in the Merchant Banking Division at Goldman, Sachs & Co, Henrik Lundqvist, Goaltender with the New York Rangers, Bret Baier, Chief Political Anchor with the FOX News Channel and Conor McGregor, UFC Lightweight Champion.
350 guests from the spheres of business, the arts and politics attended the Gala which was chaired by Alan T. Ennis, President and CEO of Glansaol.
“The Best of Ireland is a way for us to bring attention to the vital funding needed to support the research to treat life-threatening conditions” Ennis said. He continued: “By bringing together the best from the worlds of business, politics and sports on both sides of the Atlantic. The US board is providing funding for some of the very best Irish doctors who eventually find themselves based at several leading US pediatric hospitals. The support of our many American-based donors is critical to this mission and we are looking forward to another wonderful and entertaining evening.”
Father-of-three and Founding Patron Graeme McDowell said, “There’s nothing more stressful for a parent than the worry of having a sick child. Every time I have visited the children in Crumlin I’m always struck by the joy on their faces. They’re incredibly resilient but also incredibly vulnerable, so seeing them receive the best possible care in state-of-the-art facilities is reassuring. The dinner has raised almost $4m since we began and I’m delighted that Conor, Henrik, Bret and Adrian joined us at the New York Athletic Club in this, our seventh year.”
Speaking at the event honoree Conor McGregor said: “Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin in Ireland is very close to my heart. I was there twice in my life, once when I stood on a nail as an 8-year old kid and again last year. Like I said, I was born and raised in Crumlin and it is amazing what you are achieving from this event.”
CMRF aims to save and improve sick children’s lives supporting extraordinary care and vital research at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin, and the National Children’s Research Centre based at Crumlin. 1 in 100 children are born with a structural heart defect, 1 in 19 people in Ireland carry the Cystic Fibrosis gene and 120,000 children will visit Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin in a typical year.