The auction brings together such entertainment and business icons as Academy Award-winning actress Reese Witherspoon, Oscar-winner Morgan Freeman, business magnate Warren Buffett, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone, and Disney CEO Bob Iger among many others in support of CISLA’s programs empowering students to stay in school. CISLA has also received nearly $115,000 in financial contributions bringing the current total to $565,000 for the “School Day” campaign.
The chance to meet Warren Buffett after an all-you-can-eat tour of See’s Candy factory in Los Angeles brought in the highest bid of the auction, at $156,000. Jack Staub, an engineer and business owner who lives in Newport Beach, CA, placed the winning bid on August 13 at 3:59 PM EST. Jack will be attending the all-you-can-eat tour at See’s Candy with his wife Jade and their two kids – who are ready to do some serious damage to See’s inventory.
Staub said, “Jade and I were very impressed with Communities In Schools of Los Angeles and their focus on underserved kids. Last year we lost a dear friend, Kathy Godshalk, to cancer. Kathy taught math at Cypress College (a community college serving the LA-OC area) and proved supporting our future generations through education, caring and guidance makes an enormous difference. We would like to keep the cycle going through this worthy cause.”
The See’s Candy experience, originally valued at $75,000, includes the chance to see Buffett “demonstrate the only acceptable way to eat a bonbon.” Other top auction packages included lunch with Disney CEO Bob Iger; lunch with Twitter co-founder Biz Stone; golf with Morgan Freeman; lunch with Reese Witherspoon; and lunch at Whole Foods Headquarters with Whole Foods CEO John Mackey.
More than 120 packages have been auctioned to date, including incredible experiences from Geoffrey Rush, Helen Mirren, Alyssa Milano, Dylan McDermott, Ron Howard, Joe Pesci, Stacey Snider, Amy Pascal, Morgan Spurlock, Whitney Port, Alex Kurtzman & Bob Orci and many more. While bidding for some of the items has closed, there are still several experiences such as tickets to X Factor, set visits to popular television shows, a private screening on the Warner Bros. lot among others still available for several more weeks. The campaign will culminate with many of the experiences being redeemed on or around September 20, 2013, “School Day.”
One hundred percent of net proceeds from the auction will benefit Communities In Schools of Los Angeles (CISLA), which serves over 16,000 students each year at 12 of the highest-need traditional public middle and high schools. CISLA, whose mission is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life, is addressing the Los Angeles dropout crisis by modifying the fundamental way in which student supports are delivered to schools and families in our city.
The “School Day” campaign was created in partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA), the world’s leading entertainment and sports agency, and its philanthropic arm, the CAA Foundation, long-time supporters of children’s education.
“We are beyond grateful to CAA for championing the CIS cause and raising money in support of empowering underserved students to stay in school and achieve in life. Thank you also to Charitybuzz for providing non-profits with a fundraising platform that raises significant funds and awareness,” said Deborah Marcus, Executive Director of Communities In Schools of Los Angeles.
Online charity auction leader Charitybuzz has worked with CISLA since 2010 to raise more than $750,000 in funds for the organization’s Los Angeles programs. The School Day auction marks a bold step in its partnership with CISLA to help foster positive social change.
“We’re thrilled by the overwhelming support for Communities In Schools of Los Angeles through the School Day Auction and are proud to have raised almost half a million dollars for their groundbreaking work with LA’s most at-risk children,” said Coppy Holzman, Charitybuzz CEO and Founder. “Bidders from around the world come to Charitybuzz to find incredible ways to live their dreams and make a difference, and this is no exception. The winners of these incredible opportunities to meet Warren Buffett, Reese Witherspoon, Bob Iger and more will have truly once-in-a-lifetime experiences, while changing the lives of students in the Los Angeles area.”