Gloria and Emilio Estefan give generous gift to Cleveland Clinic
Honorees for the night’s festivities Emilio Estefan and Gloria Estefan walk the red carpet for the “Power of Love Gala” at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on the Las Vegas Strip. Saturday, April 26, 2014. Image by Las Vegas News Bureau, Glenn Pinkerton
The Mellon Program for MS at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in downtown Las Vegas has received a generous gift from Gloria and Emilio Estefan.
The gift will establish the Major Jose M. Fajardo Patient Service Program, a first-of-its-kind program dedicated to coordinating and facilitating the unique quality-of-life and social service needs of multiple sclerosis patients.
The program honors Gloria Estefan's father, who suffered from the disabling neurological disease before his death. Gloria was her father's primary caregiver towards the end of his life and understands the need for a comprehensive approach to MS treatment.
What happens with a degenerative brain disease is very difficult for the patient and for the family taking care of them. During my father’s illness, I put on a brave face, but it was very, very tough on me and my family. Had I had the type of help and support that this patient service program provides, it would’ve been a lot easier,” said Gloria. “Because of my personal experience in dealing with MS, it was truly important for Emilio and I to be a part of this. Patients and their families that come to the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health will get the help they need; and for me, that is the most important aspect in creating this program.”
A coordinator for the program will act as a type of concierge for patients in need of home services, referrals to clinical trials, connections to community resources, transportation needs, and medical appointment coordination.
Gloria Estefan is the recipient of seven Grammy awards and has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide. She has also been honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and Las Vegas Walk of Fame, the Ellis Island Congressional Medal of Honor and the National Music Foundation's Humanitarian of the Year award. She was honored with the American Music Award for Lifetime Achievement and is recognized by Billboard magazine as the single most successful cross-over artist of all-time.
Emilio Estefan was instrumental in shaping, developing and directing his wife's career along with several others. That list includes Jennifer Lopez, Jon Secada, Marc Anthony, Ricky Martin and Shakira.
Earlier in 2014, they were honored at Keep Memory Alive’s annual “Power of Love Gala,” which was a fundraiser for Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health.