Skip to Content

Social Hour: Helping Hand Home Honors Austin’s Changemakers

The Champions for Children luncheon draws philanthropists and friends in support of Texas kids

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
Austin musician and featured speaker SaulPaul.

On Thursday, October 19, a thousand philanthropists and friends arrived at the JW Marriott in downtown Austin for the 24th annual Champions for Children luncheon. Presented by Don Hewlett Chevrolet Buick and chaired by Laura Mauro Landers, Kathy Mauro and Brian Liverman, the event is a way for nonprofit Helping Hand Home for Children to celebrate stand-out organizations, caregivers and volunteers that uplift youth in need.

For 130 years, the residential childcare agency has provided invaluable support to Texas’ most vulnerable, including healing services for children experiencing neglect and trauma from physical, emotional or sexual abuse. The therapeutic programs, including residential, foster and adoption offerings, have contributed to life-changing care for thousands of families.

Emceed by Chet Garner, host of the six-time Emmy Award-winning travel series “The Daytripper,” guests enjoyed a delectable meal and mingled with like-minded leaders during the event. Featured speaker and Grammy-nominated local musician SaulPaul shared his own onerous experiences and how he’s used life’s toughest challenges to reach success and give back to his community.

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
1
16

Kathy Mauro, Brian Liverman & Laura Mauro Landers

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
2
16

Beth Plater & The Bisby Family

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
3
16

Leanna Ferguson, Susan Farmer, Cora Lynn Wilson & Gail Dabbs

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
4
16

Jessica & Sam Benesch

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
5
16

Erin & David Hewlett

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
6
16

Tim Crowley, Peter Inman, SaulPaul & Chet Garner

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
7
16

Pastor Joe Champion

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
8
16

Derrick & Brittni Johnson

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
9
16

Laura Craddick & Amy Biegel

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
10
16

Christy & Chris Merritt

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
11
16

Caroline Boudreaux with friends

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
12
16

Chet Garner

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
13
16

Beth Plater & Derrick Johnson

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
14
16

Sam Benesch & Jamaal Charles

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
15
16

Kelly Mucci, Rosemarie Caskey, Katie Hudson & Ann Bauer

Helping Hand Home Champions for Children
16
16

SaulPaul performing.

The day was also spent awarding a handful of deserving organizations and individuals for their generous humanitarian efforts. This year’s Philanthropic Honoree was Derrick Johnson and his Defend the Dream Foundation. The former Texas Longhorn and Kansas City Chiefs linebacker created the organization to provide low-income and inner-city youth with opportunities and resources to help them reach their full potential in school and in life.

Acknowledgements were also given to the Founder of the Miracle Foundation, Caroline Boudreaux; Sam Benesch, Youth Volunteer for Make-A-Wish Central & South Texas; and Helping Hand Home adoptive parents, the Bisbys.

Helping Hand Home recently expanded its campus, nearly doubling its capacity to house and help children. For more information on its powerful work and how you can get involved, visit helpinghandhome.org.