Within a few hours of getting off the medication that had been staving off her premature labor for more than five months, Vanessa Breitling was in the delivery room giving birth to her second child, Valentina. The girl, delivered at 36 weeks, was something of a miracle. Mom’s strict regimen of drugs and bed rest had saved her baby from complications that premature birth can cause—cerebral palsy, intellectual disabilities, chronic lung disease, blindness and hearing loss.
After the ordeal, and awash in gratitude for their healthy daughter, Vanessa and her husband, Fertitta Interactive Chairman Tom Breitling, thought about Las Vegans who couldn’t afford the treatment that saved Valentina’s life. They learned that the city has a higher-than-average pre-term birth rate, at 14.7 percent. So in 2011 they started the Pregnancy Foundation Las Vegas, a chapter of the national nonprofit.
The foundation’s annual fundraiser is at 7 p.m. March 14 at The Act in the Shoppes at the Palazzo. Despite the serious subject matter, the Breitlings set a lighthearted tone. “It’s a fun, sexy evening out,” Vanessa says. Part of the money raised will go back to the national organization; the remainder will be used for local educational programs and free medication for 100 qualifying women.