South Miami and Gables Rotarians among ‘Give Kids the World’ charity partners

JOBC Past President Barbara Waters (left), Coral Gables Rotary President Walter Alvarez, Barbara Norland and Gloria Burns enjoy Jr. Orange Bowl July Social at CRAVE in the Village of Merrick Park.

The Rotary Club of South Miami was one of many charity partners that participated in the Give Kids the World “Scoops of Hope” Breakfast on July 26, underwritten and held at The Westin Colonnade. The event not only helped raise funds to provide children and their families with the vacation of a lifetime at the GKTW Village in the Orlando area but also provided local charities a no cost way to raise funds through ticket sales. Guests at this sold out event enjoyed a full breakfast buffet with ice cream as a topper for dessert. Westin General Manager Mike Wurster and his staff raised additional funds through a raffle and silent auction while many attendees left with a full tummy, a gift certificate donated by the Giving Tree’s Joan Reitsma, and door prizes. Aside from the South Miami Rotarians, other charities using the event to support GKTW and their own programs included the Gulliver Schools Interact Club, the GFWC Coral Gables Woman’s Club, the Rotary Club of Coral Gables, the Rotary Club of South Miami, Coral Gables Senior High School’s Interact Club, and the PBSA Power (a Girls Baseball Team) to mention a few.

Lots of military were invited to the breakfast thanks to generous donors and veterans benefited in yet another way. The more than 50 tickets sold by Rotary’s Assistant District Governor, Yolanda Woodbridge, of the Gables Rotary Club, will benefit the Club’s ongoing visits to the VA hospital for bingo, an activity the patients look forward to every month.

Like the Westin and so many other local restaurants, CRAVE at the Village of Merrick Park has been hosting several nonprofits since its opening and recently hosted the Jr. Orange Bowl Committee’s July Social on July 17. Among the many enjoying the event was Barbara Norland who would later be hired as the JOBC’s new Executive Director. Others enjoying the evening were President Don Slesnick III; JOBC Past Presidents Barbara Waters, Chuck Little, Marti Bueso, and JR Steinbauer with his daughter, Erika; Pete Tolmach; Coral Gables Rotary President Walter Alvarez; Maggie and Rusty Hill; and lots more. This JOBC event and so many others have been orchestrated by CRAVE’s Group Sales and Marketing Director Christina Ward, a cofounder of High Heels and Hand Shakes, a community resources organization that has already helped countless charities.

Speaking of High Heels and Hand Shakes, the organization next event will be a reception hosted by CRAVE on Wed., August 15, 6 – 8 p.m. Admission will be $10 and/or a pair of new or slightly used high heels that will be donated to a local charity. The Coral Gables Woman’s Club has been invited to partner with High Heels and Hand Shakes for this event with the hopes of promoting the Club and its free children dental clinic that provided more than $231,000 in free dental care last year alone to Miami Dade County school children in need. Women interested in networking while also using their talents to make a positive impact on our community are encouraged to join the fun that evening and meet these women whose efforts make a difference. For more information visit

Until next time, keep making each day count.

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About the Author

Gloria Burns
A graduate of the University of Florida with a major in Spanish, Burns has an extensive background in advertising, marketing and reciprocal trade, travel as well as non profit consulting and management. Active in many non profits, she received numerous awards across the community. Among her list of current responsibilities, Burns co-chairs two annual student recognition breakfasts for the Coral Gables Friends of Education; helps coordinate charity partners for the Westin Colonnade's Annual Give Kids the World Breakfast; serves on the board of directors of Doral Business Council; is Parliamentarian and serves on the board of the GFWC Coral Gables Woman’s Club; serves the board of the Rotary Club of Coral Gables and is Publicity Chair; and is a member of the Jr. Orange Bowl Committee. Gloria is also an active member of the Music Ministry at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, where she sings in the choir. She can be reached at

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