Friday, January 31, 2014

Join Unicorn and Hunter Hayes Tomorrow!

Join us at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center TOMORROW, February 1, 2014 to help cheer us on. Gates will open at 5:30p.m. with the first horse on course at 6:30p.m.

Incredible concert performance to follow the FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge competition by four-time Grammy nominated country star, Hunter Hayes! He is a multi-talented performer, musician, producer, and writer. His critically acclaimed Atlantic Records self-titled album garnered three consecutive No. 1 singles, selling over eight million singles to date while the album itself has been certified platinum by the R.A.A.

General admission is $35 per person for this event. $20 parking.
NO tickets will be sold at the door. Tickets valid STRICTLY prior to 6:30pm.

Buy your tickets here: 

Saturday, February 01, 2014 at 6:00 PM
Palm Beach International Equestrian Center
13421 South Shore Blvd.
Wellington, FL 33414
Phone: (561) 793-5867

Join Us at Muse A Hair Salon Tonight!

Please join us tonight at Muse A Hair Salon for their Halo makeup launch and Live art show benefiting Unicorn Children's Foundation. Raffle prizes, great music and wine and cheese.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

2014 FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge

We're just 2 days away from the 2014 FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge benefiting Unicorn Children's Foundation! 

Cheer us on and then cheer for a performance by Hunter Hayes

Join us this Saturday, February 1st at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. $35 General Admission. $20 Parking. No tickets will be sold at the door.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Root for Unicorn this Saturday with Hunter Hayes!

We hope you are as excited as we are to see multi-platinum recording artist and four-time Grammy nominee, Hunter Hayes, perform during the 2014 FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments. 

The event will be held this coming Saturday, February 1st at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. $35 General Admission. $20 Parking. No tickets will be sold at the door.

This is a relay style equestrian jumping competition with teams consisting of two junior/amateur riders combined with one Olympic or world-class rider. The 34 rider teams are randomly paired with 34 charities, including us, that serve Palm Beach County.

Each charity is GUARANTEED a minimum of $10,000! Come out to root for Unicorn Children's Foundation!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Friday, January 24, 2014

Workers with Disabilities Solved This Company's Talent Crisis

When Gitanjali Gems set up its diamond-cutting, polishing and jewellery making unit in its 176 acre campus outside Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh in southern India, it faced a major human resources challenge. There was no trained manpower available in Hyderabad, unlike traditional hubs of diamond polishing like Surat, Gujarat in western India, where diamond polishing skills are passed down generation to generation. The cost for six months of training per youth in Hyderabad were a high $500 (Rs.25,000). The work of polishing tiny diamonds was intricate, requiring great concentration, and dropouts meant spiralling production costs. Finally, employee engagement across India is extremely low: just 8% of Indians are engaged, while 32% are actively disengaged according to a recent Gallup poll.
Madhusudhan Reddy, VP of HR, has a major challenge on his hands: How do you hire, train, retain and develop productive, engaged employees and make the new unit cost effective?
Gitanjali Gems, part of the Gitanjali Group ( promoted by Mehul Choksi, is one of the largest and fastest-growing diamond and jewellery businesses in the world. Gitanjali Group is a $1 billion company with a presence in US, UK, Belgium, China, Japan and India. It pioneered the concept of branded diamonds in India, and has multiple brands for different markets and price segments.
When Gitanjali Gems won the best employer award in the nation for hiring disabled employees in 2009, its Chairman Choksi said: “Since the gems and jewelry manufacturing process offers scope for employment of persons with disabilities, we have responsibility to the society at large and are proud to commit in helping.” Choksi was committed to and interested in hiring more rural and disabled youth as a CSR initiative. In return, the company got a workforce of loyal employees, with less attrition and higher productivity compared to other firms. Today, 280 of their 2500 workforce are disabled youth.
The increased loyalty and higher performance of these youth has made sourcing, training and hiring disabled youth no longer just CSR intiative but an integral part of Gitanjali Gem’s talent management strategy. As they expand to hiring 5,000 people in the next two years, the plan is to ensure at least 1,000 of them are disabled, according to Deepan Shah, their Sr. VP of Operations.
We analysed the factors which made hiring disabled youth good business sense for Gitanjali Gems:
It helped the company tap into a larger unused labor pool. India has a population of 20 million disabled of which barely 0.1% are employed in the organised sector.

Training and hiring costs pay for themselves quickly.
 Centre for PwD (Person with Disability) Livelihoods, a public-private partnership between Society for Elimination of Rural Poverty, government of Andhra Pradesh and Youth4Jobs subsidises the training costs realising this investment is a value proposition, and continuously feeds best practises into disabled youth trainings. Also, these youth seem to have higher loyalty, it is a win win for the company as well as the youth. According to Reddy, the attrition rate of disabled youth is 1% compared to 10%-15% for others.
Productivity is higher. Deepan Shah says, “In an 8 hour shift, we are able to get 7+ hours productivity from the disabled, compared to 5.5+ hours from others. This 1.5 hour loss per employee per day increases our cost by more than 10%. The motivation and will power of disabled youth are also high; they are eager to prove that their disability is not a deterrent to performance. Most months, the productivity award is won by a disabled employee even though they are only about 12% of our employees.” The company also offers productivity-linked incentives, which helps youth take home an average salary of $160 (Rs.8000) per month — considering that these youth are sometimes not even high school graduates, it is a very good amount.
It leveraged government benefits. The government of India has a scheme by which companies hiring disabled can get the employers Employee State Insurance (ESI) and Provident Fund contributions for three years. This adds up to about 15% break for the company per youth.
It gave them a public relations boost. Diversity — abled and disabled youth working together in an inclusive manner — gives them a competitive edge: extra public relations points with western customers. The company won several awards for this work ranging from the Presidents’ award to Shell Helen Keller award. Indian national media has highlighted Gitanjali’s initiative as a company doing business with a social face.
All employees enjoyed a more compassionate workplace. Owners experience the joy of touching and transforming lives of underprivileged disabled youth. This “feel good effect” has made the company go beyond just training to show genuine love and compassion above and beyond what is common in most workplaces. Parents of disabled youth are invited to meetings where they are shown the facilities where their children work. A pool of doctors are made available to attend to youth’s specialised health needs. The company now offers free boarding and lodging facilities, and a special van has been provided for commuting between office and hostels.
Is the experience of Geetanjali Gems with disabled unique to the company and the disabled in India? Is it possible to learn and transfer the learning to other workplaces? We believe that it is possible and is already happening. Youth4Jobs (which one of us founded) has been partnering with companies, government and the rural community to identify, source, train and counsel disabled, tribal youth and girls from rural underprivileged families to help companies build an inclusive workforce. They have placed capable, loyal and happy employees in many organizations in Hyderabad like Orbit Mall, McDonalds, and KFC.
And yet, says Reddy, “Most employers suffer from preconceived notions about disabled, so they see only weaknesses. They are differently abled not disabled — once you frame them that way, you see their strengths and might be willing to give them an opportunity.” Reddy has been very passionate and and loves to expand the work that he has been doing with the disabled. He has placed these differently abled youth as diamond polishers, jewelry makers, cashiers, quality control and store managers and is constantly looking for other opportunities where they can shine and contribute.
To replicate Gitanjali model, the company leadership — all the way from the top management down to first level supervisors — need to believe in the cause and own the initiative. They have to go beyond the token hiring and be willing to invest in the people and company’s future.
The key is to start with an open mind to explore the latent talent of the people who do not fit into the traditional mold of employees. The more you invest in creating a culture of sensitivity and even love and forgiveness, the more you get back.

Taken From:

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Still haven't submitted your Program Book Ad?

No worries! Submit your ad by tomorrow, and you've made it into our 2014 Gala Program Book!

You may choose to place a business ad, a family photograph, a wedding photo, your photo from a past Unicorn event, your children or grandchildren, a memoriam, a message of hope, honor a friend with a tribute page, or take advantage of our pet page.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Friday, January 17, 2014

Vote for Unicorn!

Alright everyone, get your fingers ready.... We need your help!

Voting is now open to help Unicorn Children's Foundation win for the $50,000 FTI Challenge! You can vote once per day until Saturday, February 1st.

The top 3 fan favorite charities will each win a portion of $50,000 and all you have to do is show them your support. Winners will be announced at the FTI GCC awards ceremony. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Aaron's First Day!

Congratulations to Aaron Cabrera on his first day of work at Sports Authority today, thanks to the Career Academy at Unicorn Village Academy!


Please join Advocacy in Action for a webinar with Peter Gerhardt Ed.D. on the skills people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) need in adulthood. Dr. Gerhardt has more than three decades of experience using behavioral principles to assist teenagers and adults with ASD in school, work, residential and community settings. Dr. Gerhardt is managing partner of JPG Autism Consulting LLC, and chair of the Scientific Council of the Organization for Autism Research. He also is an editor of Social Skills and Adaptive Behavior in Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

This webinar is a project of the Simons Foundation.

What's a Webinar?
A webinar is a meeting held over the web that you can access through your computer. It's a great way to attend an event without leaving home.

What's the topic?
What skills will teens and young adults with autism spectrum disorder need for adulthood? This presentation will describe the importance of teaching functional and adaptive skills.

Title: Autism and Adaptive Behavior and the Functionality Index

Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Time: 1 p.m. Eastern Time (10 a.m. Pacific Time)

Length: 50 minutes (40 minute presentation and 10 minute question and answer session)

To attend: On January 22 at 1 p.m. Eastern Time (10 a.m. Pacific), go to, enter 2979382 in the "PARTICIPANT, Join a Conference" box, and click the JOIN button. You may listen and watch on your computer. No prior registration is required.

To submit a question: Send your question before or during the webinar to

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Friday, January 10, 2014

Join Us for the FTI Great Charity Challenge!

Unicorn Children's Foundation has the honor of being chosen as 1 of 34 charities that will be competing at the FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge! This is a relay style equestrian jumping competition with teams consisting of two junior/amateur riders combined with one Olympic or world-class rider. The 34 rider teams are randomly paired with 34 charities that serve Palm Beach County.

Each charity is GUARANTEED a minimum of $10,000!

Join us at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center on Saturday February 1, 2014 to help cheer us on. Gates will open at 5:00p.m. with the first horse on course at 6:00p.m. General admission is FREE for this event.

VIP Box Seats – $50
Other Seating options available
Please contact Annette Goyette: or 561-784-1120

Private Dining: $200/person, $1,000 for a table of 6
Please contact Anne Caroline Valtin: or 561-784-1133

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Program Book Deadline Approaching

The deadline for our 2014 Gala Program Book is around the corner. 

We will be hosting our 14th Annual Palm Beach Gala on March 1, 2014 at the Mar-a-Lago Club, Palm Beach, Florida. We are anticipating over 500 attendees representing a cross-section of South Florida’s community leaders, business professionals and philanthropists.

We hope that you will take advantage of this incredible opportunity to expose your business to prospective new clients and friends.

For more information, visit

Monday, January 6, 2014

Participate in our 2014 Gala Program Book!

It is with great pleasure that we invite you to participate in our 2014 Annual Palm Beach Gala, Program Book. Our Gala will be held on Saturday, March 1, 2014 at Mar-a-Lago. This year’s goal is to raise over $100,000 to support children and young adults with special needs.

The choices are endless: full page, half page, quarter page, business card, or name listing. You may choose to place a business ad, a family photograph, a wedding photo, your photo from a past Unicorn event, your children or grandchildren, a memoriam, a message of hope, honor a friend with a tribute page, or take advantage of our pet page.

All program book proceeds will strengthen our growing education, awareness, and research efforts benefiting children and young adults. Please help us build our dream to secure the future for countless individuals with neuro-diversity who are seeking to achieve their true potential and lead productive and fulfilling lives.

Thank you in advance for your continued support. To help a child is to change the future.

Friday, January 3, 2014