Editor’s Note: Victor Drai and Las Vegas are synonymous with nightlife excitement, and although thousands line up each week to glide through the golden ropes to party in his playgrounds, few know of the extraordinary gifts that the mogul gives to say thank you to Las Vegas for his incredible success. This summer he launched his long-term community outreach program, Drai’s Cares, and here his son, Dustin, tells us all about the unique project.
With the creation of Drai’s Afterhours — 20 years ago this summer — my father, Victor Drai, unknowingly created a legacy in Las Vegas that would come to shift the city’s entertainment culture for the foreseeable future. Over the last two decades, Vegas has come alive in many iterations and has seen countless trends come and go. But one thing that’s stayed constant for Drai’s is its loyalty and unwavering support from tourists and locals alike.
Now, with the addition of two venues, Drai’s Beachclub — Nightclub, on the roof of the original location — what is now The Cromwell — in 2014 and world-class ventures in top destinations around the globe, there’s no doubt in our minds that Drai’s wouldn’t be what it is today without the support of the Las Vegas community, which got us thinking: How do we say thank you?
It’s sort of that age-old problem you face every Christmas. What do you get the special person in your life that already seems to have it all?
Ultimately, we wanted to figure out a way to show how much Drai’s cares for this beautiful, always-evolving city. So, this summer, we proudly launched Drai’s Cares, a long-term community outreach initiative with a purpose of engaging our employees and valued patrons in service opportunities to help those in the valley who need our support most.
While there are countless groups and organizations in Las Vegas that could benefit, we wanted to reach out to organizations that might not always receive a ton of attention or receive substantial grants and funding that others might. We want to help the underserved in our community and let them know that we have their backs.
Throughout the remainder of the year, and for the foreseeable future after that, Drai’s will partner with various local groups and organizations who engage with the most underserved populations of our community.
In June, we kicked things off by partnering with the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth for our first-ever give-back initiative. I think I can speak for the entire 30+ person team of employees who donated their time that day when I say it was an incredibly eye-opening experience.
I don’t think any of us had a concept of just how large the homeless youth population is in Las Vegas, much less the issues the youth face on a daily basis, including sex trafficking, surviving the harsh elements, abusive support systems and so much more. NPHY’s commitment to helping provide youth the opportunity to change and get out of their situations is truly admirable.
This summer, we are partnering with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Nevada to treat their youth to a series of exclusive pool parties they’ll never forget. And through the end of 2017, we’ve committed to partner with Cambeiro Elementary School in North Las Vegas, The Shade Tree and the Friends of the Las Vegas Metro Police Department Foundation for various types of engagement opportunities including campus visits, supply grants, event sponsorships and more.
It’s hard to put into words what it feels like to hand a homeless child a brand-new pair of shoes or to see the smile on someone’s face when you hand them their first, and possibly only, meal of the day.
We might not be able to solve all the world’s problems, but we’re happy to help out with what we can here at home.
Thank you, Las Vegas.