Tuesday, May 28, 2013

H.O.M.E. Event Highlights Kick Off Of National 'On The Vine' Kidney Research Fundraising Effort


A reception was held recently at H.O.M.E. (House of Music & Entertainment) in Beverly Hills to announce On The Vine, a music, comedy, art and fashion event benefiting breakthrough kidney disease research among African Americans that will take place at Martha's Vineyard this summer.

It was held to highlight the kickoff of the fundraising effort which is designed to help prevent and combat kidney disease among African Americans.
The event was hosted by On the Vine Founder and Executive Producer Dennis Shortt who has partnered with the American Friends of Rambam to bring awareness and raise funds to help eradicate kidney disease.  


"The implications of this research are tremendous and its our privilege to be able to educate people on this," said Michele Segelnick, executive director of the American Friends of Rambam 

The night's entertainment featured Grammy Award winners The Tony Rich Project and Universal Records, Israeli-born violinist Miri Ben-Ari. Lending their support of the event were actress Melinda Williams and singer Howard Hewitt.


A four-day music and entertainment fundraising festival to benefit kidney disease research will be hosted by The American Friends of Rambam and is set to take place Aug. 22-25 on Martha’s Vineyard. It will also honor kidney disease survivor Natalie Cole.

The entertainment lineup for that event includes Kenny "BabyFace" Edmonds, jazz greats Kahil El Zabar, Roy Hardgrove and James Carter, Smokey Robinson, comedian and kidney disease survivor Richard Lewis, violinist Miri Ben-Ari, singer- songwriter Angie Stone and others.


On The Vine will be an annual event benefiting the Rambam Health Care Campus located in Haifa, Israel and will help fund the breakthrough kidney disease research of Professor Karl Skorecki. 

According to reports, the world is approximately five years and $4 million away from the prevention of kidney disease among African Americans.

Statistics show that about 40 million Americans have kidney disease, of whom almost 12 million are Black.  African Americans are more than three times more likely to suffer from kidney disease. While African Americans account for only 14% of the population, they make up 30% of all patients treated for kidney failure. Of the 580,000 Americans on dialysis due to kidney failure, African Americans constitute 187,000 nearly a third.  African American patients often wait up to 10 years before getting a match for a transplant because there are fewer potential donors for Black people.

Breakthrough medical research led by Dr. Karl Skorecki and his team based at Rambam Hospital in Israel, has isolated genetic markers that are linked to contracting kidney disease, as the first step to prevention and cure. 


The American Friends of Rambam is a non-profit foundation that manages the fundraising and
communication efforts for Rambam Hospital. A major fundraising effort is underway to secure these funds in order to get rid of this debilitating disease. It's been estimated that if every African American family with a kidney disease patient donated $1 to this research, the disease could be eradicated.  

Donations can be made on the following website: www.aforam.org or via mail, payable to American Friends of Rambam Medical Center to Lea Bernstein, AFORAM, 521 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1731, New York, NY 10175.

For more information, go to www.onthevineevents.com.

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