Last Saturday, “How To Make It In America” star Bryan Greenberg hosted his 2nd Annual Olevolos Project Fundraiser Brunch at the popular LES brunch spot, The General. While the restaurant was already jam-packed with wall-to-wall eye candy per its typical Saturday scene, the temperature took a noticeable turn north when a few of Greenberg’s friends stopped by to support his charitable event. “Anytime a friend has a great cause I am happy to be there to support,” said longtime friend and “One Tree Hill” star James Lafferty as he chatted with us on the red carpet.
Greenberg, after traveling to a small village in Northern Tanzania in 2010, was astounded by what he encountered during his visit; children living in extreme poverty with little access to basic necessities such as food, water, and education. “It’s incredible because the lifespan of these children is cut short,” he said. “Money makes a difference, but going there and actually seeing how they live and being able to create change makes a huge impact.”
Being a newbie to the experience yet immediately moved, Greenberg wanted to give back by raising money for the children’s tuition, healthcare, and access to clean showers. Incidentally, he was afforded that opportunity through his cousin Dory Gannes, who had been traveling to East Africa since eight years old and works as Executive Director of the Olevolos Project. After teaming up with Gannes, Greenberg recruited some of his high-profile friends to help spread awareness in NYC. “Bryan Greenberg is one of my closest friends,” said actor Geoff Stults. “When a friend gets passionate about something, you get passionate about it too. I am touched just watching him develop this charity and seeing it get bigger and better each year.”
Greenberg’s girlfriend of the past year, “Eden” star Jamie Chung, has been actively supporting her beau by helping him gather auction items and bringing attention to the Project. “To be apart of the process is a lot of work, but it’s for such a great cause that I am more than happy to do it,” she told us. “Dory is so invested and giving; it really inspires you to open your heart and be apart of an organization that helps such a massive amount of people. I got to see firsthand what they had to do to put this fundraiser together and my work doesn’t even compare to the amount of time they have invested.”
Other attendees included actor Jamie Hector of “The Wire” and Pro BMX rider Nigel Sylvester, who also spoke about his passion for giving back on the red carpet. “It’s definitely a fantastic cause,” he told us. “Any chance I have to give back, I am always down for it; it keeps me well-grounded. I don’t take anything for granted so giving back is super important, especially when you have so much to give.”
– Tracey Lewis