Univision hosted its first 28-hour Teletón USA (USA Telethon) broadcast live from Miami, New York, Texas, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Puerto Rico to raise money for kids with disabilities, cancer, and autism. Don Francisco, the host of the variety show Sábado Gigante, led the effort to raise $7 million by Sunday with the help of over 100 Latino stars including Jorge Ramos, Lucero, William Levy, Galilea Montijo and Raul Gonzalez. The successful event raised more than $8.15 million to help children’s hospitals across the country and build the first children’s rehabilitation center in the United States, the Centro de Rehabilitación Infantil Teletón (CRIT). During the telethon, 28 families depicted their struggle with their children’s health. Performers included Gloria Estefan, Paulina Rubio, Jesse & Joy, Yuri, Chayanne, Daniela Romo, Larry Hernández, Los Temerarios, Graciela Beltrán, Rogelio Martínez, Mariana Seoane, Paz de la Sierra, Cañaveral, Alex, Syntek, Beto Cuevas, Palomo, Calibre 50, María José, Mijares, Frankie J, Los Vázquez Sound and Reik. “I want to thank God, our creator, and all of these children,” said the President of Teletón USA Fernando Landeros, after seeing the Telethon had surpassed its original goal by over $1 million. “I want to tell all of those who donated ‘thank you very much’ and to all the children, you’ll have your CRIT very soon.” Institutions that receive part of the funds raised by the telethon USA are: The Miami Children’s Hospital, where he created the marrow transplant unit, The Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, where he built a gym for rehabilitation through therapeutic Mechano, Support program helps families of children with cancer in the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Creating sensory stimulation workshops for children with autism in the Special Needs Activities Center for Kids in New York, and Finance “Miracles Program” for children at Children’s Hospital Boston. Bravo Univision!
By: Shelley Mendoza