It was an honor to host Night to Shine, the Tim Tebow Foundation’s annual prom celebration for people with special needs, at our hospitals in Kenya and the Philippines.
Leron Lehman, Executive Director of the Tebow CURE Hospital, said, “Night to Shine was amazing and one of the more memorable things that I’ve been able to be part of. There were lots of highlights, but two of the things that consistently got to my emotions were seeing some of these kids walk down the red carpet with smiles a mile wide and then seeing them totally cut loose on the dance floor. It was just fantastic.”
Peter Kyalo, Executive Director of CURE Kenya, shared similar sentiments: “For me, it was an amazing event. I wasn’t sure how it would turn out but I realized that LOVE is a universal language. The smiles, and there were many smiles the entire afternoon, were a testimony of how each child felt: truly loved and appreciated.”
As a way to summarize the evening, CURE Kenya Spiritual Director Earnest Kioko shared the poem “Who is Disabled?” by Tony Wong.
If you fail to see the person but only see the disability,
Then who is blind?
If you cannot hear your brother’s cry for justice,
Who is deaf?
If you do not communicate with your sister but separate her from you,
Who is disabled?
If your heart and mind do not reach out to your neighbor,
Who has the handicap?
If you do not stand up for the rights of all persons,
Who is the cripple?
Your attitudes towards persons with disabilities might be our biggest handicap,
And yours too.
It’s our joy to see, hear, and stand up for children with disabilities, and our hope that through the ministry that happens in CURE hospitals and programs on a daily basis, these kids always feel like kings and queens, deserving of a Night to Shine!
Night to Shine at CURE Philippines
Photos by Marlene Bray and Emman Munoz
Together with 10 other organizations, we were able to crown kings and queens from Resources of the Blind, Inc., Davao School for the Blind, Down Syndrome Association of the Philippines Inc., Deaf Ministries International, Our Lady of Victory, and our very own CUREkids
Tebow CURE Hospital’s first patient, Ruby Ann, gets the royal treatment in preparation for the big night
If you told Ruby Ann before her surgery that she would be dancing in a year, she might not have believed you. Such an amazing thing to witness!
With upbeat music and colorful lights, the dance floor was packed all night, filled with kings and queens. But since we take hold of being childlike in all of our events, we can’t forget the bubbles!
These guys knew how to have a good time! As long as the music was playing, they were moving!
These dudes…total bosses! They owned the dance floor!
Along with good company, good food was definitely present as well
In addition to a whole lot of dancing, there were a whole lot of games and prizes for the participants
Having surgery just three weeks ago didn’t stop CUREkid Pamela from attending Night to Shine!
One of our CUREkids, Kleizmer, was so excited to be crowned during Night to Shine. He knew and felt that he was loved by a King!
CUREkid J-Vie’s face says it all. It was a night to remember!
In J-Vie’s own words, via Facebook, “I enjoy, SUPER!!! To explore my two new legs to dance in the floor.” We enjoyed “SUPER!!!” too!
Attendees from Deaf Ministries International couldn’t stop smiling all evening
An attendee from Resources For the Blind International, Inc. kept feeling his crown throughout the evening, making sure it wasn’t all just a dream
Night to Shine at CURE Kenya
Photos by Nelson Muoki
Mary from CURE Kenya escorts a guest to the red carpet. When the guests arrived, CURE staff were ready to give them a VIP welcome.
The VIP welcome was followed by a red carpet entry into the dining hall and a photo shoot
The smiles grew wider and wider as these special guests continued to trickle in
Our dear friend could not help but smile for the camera as she enjoyed her fresh juice, served upon arrival
Some guests had challenges using their hands, but we were ready to help!
When the band started playing, Travis (far right) and his friends joined them at the podium and helped entertain the audience
The music kept everyone smiling and dancing
Clementine and her friend danced to the lovely music from a guest musician
The boys and girls from Joy Town Primary School performed a lovely poem
This group from Masaku School for the Physically Disabled entertained us with a very touching play/poem entitled “Twists and Turns of a Disabled Child”
And then it was time for a fashion walk across the stage! Kaltuma and Moses were first to go.
David, Mr. Night to Shine, asks Faith, Miss Night to Shine, for a dance. Faith was modeling a wedding gown that she had made from scratch with mosquito nets. It was lovely!
Sharing the love! All the adults had flowers for the kids. It was a touching moment as they presented the flowers to all the kids in the house.
Love is in the air! Everyone lifts up their roses to celebrate the moment.
Friends from Joy Town pose for a selfie with their favorite gospel musician, who was in attendance
When dinner was served, it was all smiles as everyone enjoyed the delicious meal
Posing for a photo while enjoying delicious chapati, a Kenyan flatbread