At Sonesta, our Culture of Caring is an important part of our everyday, how we work and live in the communities where our hotels are found. We also pride ourselves on great events, and we are always thrilled to have the two come together, as they did at The Annual Houston Humanitarian Awards gala at Royal Sonesta Houston Galleria.

The Annual Humanitarian Awards gala celebrates the big hearts and kind works of Houstonians and honors an individual or individuals for their efforts to make the City of Houston a better place to live by action, philanthropy, volunteerism or involvement. The event was established in 2014 in tandem with Houston Random Acts of Kindness Day (“RAK”).

All photos are by Justin Ontiveros, Envision Studios 

“Year after year Royal Sonesta Houston is humbled to be the home to such an important event as Houston’s Humanitarian Awards. Celebrating individuals who promote kindness, peace and humanity in our community is what Sonesta’s Culture of Caring philosophy is all about. These exceptional people remind us to be engaged, add value to the lives of those we interact with, and to do our best to “pay it forward” every day.” ~ Pete Ells, Royal Sonesta Houston General Manager

Founders and coordinator David & Treveia Dennis and an all-volunteer team, supported by husband David Dennis’ LemonTree Foundation along with a host of supporting sponsors, have had a busy season of outreach and activities culminating with the awards presentation. Past and present random acts of kindness include furniture donations to Care Take Inc., Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, First Metropolitan Church, New Vision Fellowship Church, True Light Missionary Baptist Church, Brentwood Baptist Church, Tinh Luat Temple, Miracles Baseball Academy and Home Run Hitters; the donation of shoes to special needs children at T.H. Rogers Elementary School with Samaritan Feet; non-profit networking events hosted by Chapman & Kirby, Bentley Houston at Post Oak Motor Cars and Fusion Taco; and an iFLY Woodlands/Microsoft field trip for the entire fifth grade class of Spring’s Mildred Jenkins Elementary School. Next up are two additional shoe donations with Houston native and Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Brandon LaFell, Movie and Meal, A Seat at the Table Thanksgiving dinner for the homeless, Breakfast with our Buddies and annual Holiday Christmas Feast.

The gala was a bit different than in years past as we celebrated keeping our Stay Safe with Sonesta promise in mind. Gowns and suits were complemented by masks and face shields, temperatures were taken on entry, tables were placed at a safe distance from one another, and food and beverage stations featured protective plexi glass. Still, despite the changes, our team was happy to host this event, which uplifted spirits and brought people safely together after a time apart.

Interested in learning more about the Sonesta Culture of Caring? Check out these blog posts.