A Phoenix CEO put his largest fundraising event in the hands of an 8-year-old Phoenix boy, one of the biggest gambles he has ever taken.
More than 200 people paid $750 a ticket to attend the Foundation for Blind Children’s largest annual event at Dominick’s Steakhouse in Scottsdale on Oct. 13.
Sporting a little black suit and red bow tie, Harrison More enthusiastically made his way to the podium.
“Hi everyone, I’m Harrison … I’m so happy I get to be here because I get to stay up way past my bedtime,” the 8-year-old said humorously.
The audience broke out in laughter, but within minutes several struggled to hold back their tears.
“How about I tell you four stories about my brother that I think are really cool,” Harrison said.
As Harrison navigated through his experience as an older brother to his blind younger brother, donors at the fundraiser just couldn’t resist.
Within 30 minutes, Harrison raised more than $130,000 dollars, boosting the fundraising event’s total to $345,000.
Marc Ashton, CEO of Phoenix-based Foundation for Blind Children said, “It’s always hard to put your whole night in the hands of an 8-year-old boy, but boy, Harrison More, he blew it out of the water.”
The move to Phoenix
Phoenix was never in the cards for the More family until seven years ago, when Harrison’s mom, Taylor More, gave birth to his brother, Henry.
Taylor More told The Arizona Republic that she was in denial for a long time, hoping that her newborn was OK, but doctors told her otherwise.
Henry was diagnosed with a rare chromosomal deletion, which medical professionals said was the only one of its kind in the nation, according to the family.
Legally blind and deaf, Henry was also diagnosed with autism when he was 3.
During a trip to Phoenix from their home in Canada, the More family learned about the services offered at the Foundation for Blind Children, an opportunity they couldn’t pass up. They moved to the Valley.
“It was the best decision we ever made,” Taylor said.
“The little boy that I had to wheel in on his first day of school, who barely looked at his food, who had no idea he had any classmates … is now walking into school. He took his first steps on August 27,” she said, adding that he even has a crush on a girl in his class.