By Jill Fox
Amid the sunshine and sweltering heat, Friday was a day filled with delicious food from local restaurants, Italian ice, shopping, entertainment and games of tennis among friends all for a good cause.
The second annual Make Our Schools Safe Tennis Round Robin and Shopping Boutique raised over $40,000 for the organization dedicated to protecting students and teachers at school.
“Make Our Schools Safe empowers adults and students to do something. Your voice is your power. We must protect our children and create an environment of safety as they learn,” said president Lori Alhadeff, who lost her daughter, Alyssa, in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre.
Alhadeff wished she could go back to where her focus was on other things, like getting her children to school, playing tennis, going to the grocery store, and driving her daughter back and forth to the soccer field.
This year’s event raised $10,000 more than last year’s $30,000, including $2,500 check presentations from Coldwell Banker and Hilton Software. This will help fund security initiatives at Marjory Stoneman Douglas. So far, Make Our Schools Safe has already donated $86,000 to their mission.
“Lori Alhadeff has done so much to help with stop the bleed kits and further safety in the schools,” said Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky who thanked everyone for attending and showing the Alhadeff’s the community is always behind them.
New this year, an evening youth tournament, which featured a heartfelt performance by ShineMSD. The annual event witnessed an outpouring of participants, donors, and sponsors from the Parkland and Coral Springs community.
“We are all changed from the evil that came to Parkland on February 14,” said Alhadeff, “I would do anything to go back to February 14 and have Alyssa back to kiss her one more time and tell her that I loved her.”
- Jill Fox is an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer. She has worked on the public relations side as well as the television side of marketing for NBC Universal. A true Floridian, Fox grew up in Ormond Beach and now resides in Parkland with her husband, Brian and their two children, Madden, 10 and Randi, 7.