(NEW YORK) – Virtual Diamond Boutique (VDB), together with its co-host International Gemological Institute (IGI) raised over $35,000 for Jewelers for Children (JFC) with the first-ever international lab grown diamond charity auction. Loose lab grown diamonds and lab grown diamond jewelry, all with verified grading reports from IGI, were auctioned during jewelry market week in Las Vegas with bids closing during the JFC Facets of Hope dinner on August 29 at the Venetian Ballroom. The VDB digital auction app, created for JFC, facilitated the process. All proceeds generated from the auction sales benefit the JFC charity partners, including Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, National CASA/GAL Association, Make-A-Wish America, Make-A-Wish International, Santa-America Fund and Organization for Autism Research.
“We are grateful to the lab grow diamond community for their generosity in benefitting children,” says David Rocha, executive director of JFC. “We are also grateful to VDB for conceiving of and inspiring this collaboration, for procuring donors and for developing our digital auction app. The app has become very popular as it allows people to bid from anywhere in the world at their leisure. Our thanks also to IGI for their meaningful support in garnering donations, certifying the stones and handling the secure shipping logistics.”
Thanks to the generosity of the lab grown diamond community, $38,700 has been raised for the jewelry industry’s favorite charity. Loose lab grown diamonds, ranging in size from 1 to over 3 carats, in a variety of shapes, were donated to the project, along with a few pieces of lab grown diamond finished jewelry. Donors included leaders in the lab grown diamond industry – Aarush Diam, Clarity Diamond, Classic Grown Diamonds, Combine International, Fire Diamonds, Forever Grown Diamonds, Go Green Diamonds, Green Rocks Diamonds, Innovation Diamonds, Labon LLC, Made By Man, Maitri Diamonds Inc., Malakan Diamond Co., Meylor Global, Primo Diamonds, Smiling Rocks, Surreal Diamond and Z Diamond USA.
IGI certified each of the donated items and stored, shipped and sealed the goods. “IGI is proud to support Jewelers for Children and to have played a significant role in supporting this project,” said IGI North America President Avi Levy. “IGI pioneered lab grown diamond certification, and the opportunity to contribute our expertise and resources to this all-important fundraising initiative was truly an honor. We thank the international lab grown diamond community for offering such tangible support to children with catastrophic illness or life-threatening abuse.”
“Technology can help us to achieve great things,” said Tanya Nisguretsky, President and CEO of VDB. “We are honored that the app VDB developed for JFC enabled such a significant contribution to the children’s charities. We thank IGI for partnering with us on this project, and we are immensely grateful to all of the fabulous lab grown diamond suppliers who so generously donated! With the right software solutions and the right partners, we can all do more to make this world a little bit better.”