A north-east charity has raised a record-breaking amount of money at its latest gala dinner.
The Gathimba Edwards Foundation (GEF) collected an incredible £50,657 at its third biennial function at the Mercure Aberdeen Ardoe House Hotel and Spa.
A live auction, silent auction and Jimmy Choo raffle were just some of the ways the event – attended by 400 guests – hit the amazing total.
GEF was established in 2014 by athletes Myles Edwards and Gideon Gathimba with the aim of giving kids in Kenya a better start to life.
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WE DID IT!!! £50,657 raised at our 3rd biennial @gathimba_edwards dinner at Ardoe House Hotel! Thanks to the 400 guests and all who made this possible we are going to be able to: – Start 32 businesses for families in Kenya – In addition to the 300 children we are currently supporting through school/further education in Kenya, we will reduce the number of those on our waiting list for support (currently 99) – Make a £2,500 contribution to the Neil Jaffrey Award that this year aims to build a specialist sensory outdoor play area and also provide equipment for little Evie and her family in Aberdeenshire. This brings us to within £3,392 of the £10,000 required We also have an exciting announcement to make! Our Headline Sponsor of this year's event Phil Anderson Financial Services has very generously offered to headline sponsor the next GEF dinner on Saturday 20th February 2021. Please get in touch if you'd like to reserve tickets or tables. The GEF dinners of 2015, 2017 and this year have collectively raised a whopping £141,435! All of this incredible support from so many people means that more children in this world will wake up tomorrow with more hope. For that, we, the children of Kenya and our little hero Evie are forever grateful. Thank you.
The pair met at a running event for the opening of Aberdeen Sports Village in 2009 and have become great friends, with Myles travelling to Kenya to train with Gideon.
Myles said: “It’s incredible. When we set our goals for the dinner, we wanted to do better than we have done before.
“But we only planned to raise £9,000 to help start the new 32 business.
“When you do raise that amount, it goes a long way in Kenya. We are going to be able to do a huge amount.
“Once a lot of people get behind you you can do a lot of big things.
“I want to thank the huge number of volunteers, the generous donations and our sponsors.”
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Items sold during the night ranged from a signed baton by Usain Bolt to a McLaren driving experience.
As well as helping 32 businesses for families in Kenya, the money will also support the 300 children who the charity is currently funding through school or further education and will reduce the number of those on the waiting list.
The foundation is also making a £2,500 contribution to the Neil Jaffrey Award, which this year aims to build a specialist sensory outdoor play area and provide equipment for five-year-old Evie Munro, who lives in Aberdeen and suffers from cerebral palsy along with bulbar palsy, severe dystonia, resistant epilepsy, severe reflux and cortical vision.
This donation will help bring the goal even closer to the £10,000 target, with more than half of the funding secured.
The total is the most ever raised and brings the collective amount from the past two events – in 2015 and 2017 – to £141,435.
The next dinner will be on February 20 2021 with their headline sponsor already confirmed as Phil Anderson Financial Services Ltd.
Those who wish to attend are advised to get in touch to reserve tickets or tables.