Country superstar Clint Black to headline fundraising event emceed by television’s Melissa Peterman and Rex Linn; awardees include Reba McIntire, Pastor Tommy Barnett

PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Childhelp, the nation’s oldest and largest nonprofit dedicated to eliminating child abuse, will host its 19th annual Childhelp Drive the Dream Gala on February 18, 2023, at The Phoenician, in Scottsdale. The organization’s signature fundraising event draws celebrities, dignitaries and donors from across America to support Childhelp’s lifesaving programs, which have served more than 12 million children through 63 years.

Grammy-award winner Clint Black is the headline entertainment for the gala, which will be emceed by television personalities Melissa Peterman and Rex Linn. Other acts include Western swing great Red Steagall, Nate Nathan & The MacDaddy-os, Rosevelt Rawls, and Steve Amerson. The gala will include dinner, dancing and a live auction to benefit the Childhelp Children’s Center of Arizona, which has provided treatment, intervention and investigation services to around 150,000 child survivors of abuse and neglect since opening in 1998.

Among those honored at the gala will be ‘the Queen of Country’ Reba McEntire, who will receive the Childhelp Woman of the World Award; Dream City Church Pastor Tommy Barnett, who will receive the Childhelp Man of the World Award; and the driving school Track Rekord will receive the Childhelp Nellie Jackson Award.

Sheila and Mike Ingram are chairing the event with co-chairs Kim and Rod Cullum, and vice chairs Carol and Jim Hebets. The theme for the event, “Giddy Up For Kids,” speaks to the use of equine-assisted therapy at Childhelp’s residential villages for abused and neglected children and the occasional pony visitors to the Childhelp Children’s Center of Arizona.

“We’ve always been a bit ‘country’ at Childhelp,” explained Childhelp co-founder and CEO Sara O’Meara about the night’s theme. “In the early days, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans were two of our biggest supporters, and our villages in California and Virginia are situated in idyllic country spaces, with horses, donkeys and other animals becoming a part of the children’s lives.”

“And we’re in Arizona!” added Childhelp Co-Founder and President Yvonne Fedderson. “It doesn’t get much more ‘western’ than right here. So giddy up and give!”

Childhelp reaches tens of thousands of Arizona children and families each year through the Childhelp Children’s Center of Arizona; its prevention education program, Childhelp Speak Up Be Safe; its international child abuse helpline, the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline (1-800-4-A-CHILD;; and other Childhelp programs and services, which serve children and families nationwide.

For more information about the event and for sponsorship opportunities, contact Katrina DeBaker at or call 480-922-8212.

About Childhelp: Founded by Sara O’Meara and Yvonne Fedderson in 1959, Childhelp has brought the light of hope and healing into the lives of more than 12 million children as a leading national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping abused, neglected and at-risk children. Childhelp’s programs and services include residential treatment services, children’s advocacy centers, therapeutic foster care, group homes and child abuse prevention, education and training. The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline serves children and adults nationwide 24/7 through phone, text and online chat. For more information, visit and follow Childhelp at, and


Robert Dortch, Social Media and Public Relations Manager;, 480-922-8212