The Inaugural Fundraising Gala for Rooms That Rock 4 Chemo (RTR4C), a locally born, national non-profit that transforms chemotherapy rooms into beautiful, healing environments, was a smashing success.

The sold-out, black-tie affair was held at Hotel Nikko in San Francisco with an impressive evening full of fine dining, music, dancing and silent and live auctions punctuated by the featured event, Couture fashion show by Vasily Vein, whose exuberant gowns have made the Russian-born designer a rising star in fashion.

RTR4C was founded in May of 2011 by Master botanical illustrator, Nancy Ballard. “I was at a routine check up with my general practitioner, who is also an oncology doctor and I had one of my Iris paintings under my arm when a nurse wished out loud what a great thing it would be to have this type of art in their chemotherapy rooms.”

Ballard asked for a tour and was devastated to see these dark, drab environments without any color or hope. “I went home and came across an interior design resource on the Internet called Houzz and I contacted over 20 local designers.” 4 of them got back to her and offered to volunteer their time and resources toward transforming these spaces. In fact, much of the support Ballard receives is by the family of those affected by cancer. “This gives them the release.”

Since launching in 2011, RTR4C has transformed 150 rooms that serve more than 800K patient visits per year in 15 facilities across the United States and San Salvador, but that is just the start. Ballard’s future vision for RTR4C, “every room.”

RTR4C is 100% supported by volunteers in local communities that include designers, artists, sponsors and local vendors.

It was an inspiring evening that shows what one person looking to make a difference, one room at a time, can accomplish.

Among those in attendance were: United States Senator from California, Dianne Feinstein and former mayor of San Francisco, Willie Brown.


Author: Alex Regenstreich

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