Employees from The Sheraton in Stamford, Connecticut might have held the most extreme fundraiser we’ve ever seen! The Davidson Hotels and Resorts property has previously raised funds for the Village with everything from raffles to Easter celebrations. But after they heard about another Davidson property doing a big fundraiser that involved building a boat and floating down the Missouri River, they got the desire to do something bigger. Terry Trevino, Human Resources Director, suggested something she had always been curious to try, but never truly had a reason to attempt – skydiving. She asked around at the hotel and neighboring properties and soon Mike Bennett, General Manager of Sheraton Stamford, Vinnie Valente, Sales Manager at Sheraton Stamford and Kristie Desiderio, Front Office Manager at Marriott Hanover, were all on board.
They immediately began putting the wheels in motion, setting up a fundraising page and trying to get as many donations as possible with their thrilling feat. There were some nerves and slight hesitations, but Terry knew the motivation of raising money for Give Kids The World would keep them going. “I knew doing it as a fundraiser would inspire me to go through with it. You don’t want to let the kids down and you can’t let the people who made donations down,” she said.
On the morning of the jump, the clouds rolled in and it began to rain. As Terry, Mike, Vinnie and Kristie all suited up for their dive, the instructors informed them the weather may be too bad to go through with it. But miraculously, right at the time they were supposed to go up in the plane, the rain stopped, the clouds cleared and a rainbow appeared! They knew this was a good sign and up they went. Even though nerves were present, the instructors made the whole group feel comfortable. One by one, each person went tandem with an instructor. After all the buildup, the skydive itself seemed to only last a short period of time.
So far, the team has raised $2,000, but donations are still rolling in after people learned that they actually went through with the dive! While it may seem like an extreme way to raise money, any effort to support GKTW is important to the group. As Mike, who has been with Davidson for 18 years, puts it, “GKTW is part of Davidson’s culture. From the day we started, it’s always been a passion for the company. Just to see what you guys do is truly amazing.”
We are so grateful to Terry, Mike, Vinnie and Kristie for taking this big leap to raise funds for the Village!