Guests dig deep at Gift of Life Ball

22nd January 2019


The World Transplant Games 2019 kicked off their fundraising activities with the fabulous Gift of Life Ball at Hilton Hotel on Saturday 19 January, raising an incredible £80,000 towards staging the Games.

Guests generously dug deep at the sparkling event in support of this Summer’s Games which take place in NewcastleGateshead from 17-24 August.  Known as the ‘Transplant Olympics’, the Games will see around 3000 transplant athletes and supporters from across the World compete in sports from basketball to tennis, swimming to athletics. The Games, sponsored by Westfield Health, are a celebration of a second chance of living life to the full and aim to raise awareness of organ donation.

310 guests enjoyed a spectacular evening with superb MC Miss Rory and the fabulous Lorraine Crosby and her Band providing entertainment and keeping the guests dancing until the early hours.

Companies from across NewcastleGateshead and the North East bought tables in support of the glitzy event including Bidfood, Collingwood Insurance, Cellular Solutions, TSG, True Potential and Barclays.

The impressive total raised was made possible thanks to the generosity of auction prize donors and those who donated throughout the evening to bag a prize. The Gift of Life tree and raffle proved popular with guests with one very lucky lady taking home a beautiful diamond ring, valued at £4k, provided by Donor Family Network.

The evening’s highlight was the much-anticipated auction and bidding was very competitive. Just a few of the items going under the hammer were villa holidays in St Lucia and Majorca, inner ringside tickets for an Anthony Joshua boxing fight and a Tuscany Vineyard experience. Local artists and twins Steve and Chris Rocks from Spennymoor were in attendance to see their painting auctioned and renowned live painter Ben Mosley created a work of the iconic Tyne Bridge and Quayside.

GB Team Manager Lynne Holt and transplant athlete Kaylee Davidson also spoke at the event and guests were incredibly moved by videos of transplant stories.

Graham Wylie, Chair of the Local Organising Committee for World Transplant Games said: “The Gift of Life Ball was a huge success. I’d like to thank all the incredible prize donors, auction bidders, and guests for helping us to reach this impressive total as well as all those who worked behind the scenes to make the evening very special. The Ball is just one of the many activities that will be staged to raise funds for the NewcastleGateshead Games and to throw the spotlight on organ donation. Tickets will soon go on sale for the Afternoon Tea which takes place at Hilton Hotel on 29 March.”

Graham Moore, Chairman at Westfield Health, a lead sponsor of the games said: “The World Transplant Games is a fantastic initiative which raises awareness of such an important cause. It showcases the importance of transplants and the inspirational stories of those who have received them. It’s wonderful to see such generous contributions at fundraising activities like the Gift of Life Ball, raising incredible amounts to support the games.”

For more information on the Games, organ donation and the Afternoon Tea and to find out how you can get involved in volunteering and fundraising go to:

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