The Animal Recovery Mission (ARM), a non-profit investigative organization dedicated to eliminating extreme animal cruelty operations worldwide, set the bar high with its spectacular first annual fundraising event, ‘A Day of Consciousness.’
More than 150 guests attended the vegan event to support ARM’s mission to investigate, expose and derail illegal and inhumane animal cruelty operations in its efforts to save animals from some of the most extreme forms of torture and undignified deaths. The occasion also set the stage to launch its new programs and initiatives of living a more humane and conscious lifestyle.
“A Day of Consciousness is to create positive change for the welfare of animals, nature and our own personal health,” explained Richard ‘Kudo’ Couto, ARM’s Founder, Chief Executive Director and Lead Investigator. “I’ve created the Animal Recovery Mission to help with that change and to educate the world!”
Richard ‘Kudo’ Couto
Actress and animal advocate, Gabrielle Anwar; Successful Entrepreneur, Owner of The Forge and Chair of the Make a Wish Foundation, Shareef Malnik; local artist David ‘Lebo’ LeBatard; Douglas Elliman Florida CEO, Jay Parker; and ARM’s Founder Richard ‘Kudo’ Couto were among the special guests who gave informative and supporting speeches.
Gabrielle Anwar and Shareef Malnik
Hosted on Earth Day, April 22nd, 2017, at the breathtaking, oceanfront Eighty Seven Park Sales Gallery, the vegan affair was the first event to be sponsored under the newly created Douglas Elliman Shares charity initiative (“DE Shares”). ARM was chosen along with St Jude’s and Habitat for Humanity as the three main charities which the luxury real estate company supports with its program.
Upon arrival, guests were greeted with a red carpet reception including complimentary champagne, luxury label wines and goody bags filled with LUSH cosmetics, Dr. Dennis Gross products, Soul cycle and Equinox gifts and a BPA free water bottle, compliments of the Clear Title Group.
Once inside, they were treated to musical performances by talented local pianist Ana Nikolic and violinist Anton Smirnov.
Vegan cuisine and lite bites were offered throughout the event by amazing sponsors including Beaker & Gray, SuViche, Via Verde and Riviera Focacceria Italiana. Guest enjoyed mingling at a beachfront cabana bar while sipping on signature craft drinks featuring Casamigos Tequila and an assortment of red and white wines from Palm Bay International.
Vendors showcased a boutique ‘vegan’ shopping experience and included; the launching of Raw&Rooted clothing by Gracia Maria, Creation De Hart, Sahira Jewelry, Luna handbags, Ikidikid, Feed me Health, Full Circle, and Soul Cycle.
A LUSH Cosmetic spa offered complimentary massage bar services whilst vegan delicacies were featured at the Innocent Chocolate and Antoinette’s gourmet donut booths.
Sexy lounge vibes were provided on the outside deck by Lariena Pershyn as people shopped and took in the beautiful ocean views. Activities being offered were yoga by the renown Valeria Hinojosa from Water Thru Skin and Animal Flow sessions by Master Instructor, Rebecca Evans. Children attending the event enjoyed face painting and were adorned with balloon art.
The silent auction was composed of over 70 amazing items and was a huge draw at the event ranging from one-of-a-kind artwork, sports memorabilia and luxury getaways and spa services.
Photos: Jorge Andres Castillo