Ball raises $90,000+ for Refuge

By Staff Reporter

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MAKE YOUR BIDS: Military policeman Richard Skipper runs the auction at Saturday's Great Ball with precision, persuasion and humour.
PHOTO/ MARK BRIMBLECOMBE
MAKE YOUR BIDS: Military policeman Richard Skipper runs the auction at Saturday's Great Ball with precision, persuasion and humour. PHOTO/ MARK BRIMBLECOMBE

A remarkable $90,000 has been raised for Women's Refuge Whanganui from Saturday night's glittering Great Ball.

And with donations still rolling in, the final total is set to grow.

A sellout crowd of 320 enjoyed a night of food, wine and dancing at the War Memorial Centre, with a live auction and a silent auction attracting impressive bids.

Great Ball chair Sharon Warburton and Women's Refuge chair Paula Wade expressed their thanks to sponsors, donors and bidders who all helped raise money with the aim of establishing a hub in the city to support women and families.

Jabulani Medical pledged $1000 on the night and Ms Wade was particularly pleased with their desire to learn more about the Refuge. "The more organisations and people who get connected with Women's Refuge, the more we can help our families," she said.

The evening included an anonymous pledge of $5000, with additional funds expected from photographs taken by Mark Brimblecombe and profits from the popular whisky bar.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush gave a heartfelt speech which included the pertinent statistic of one woman every 30 minutes ringing the Refuge crisis line, while singer Tina Cross, Women's Refuge patron, sent a video-ed message that included her song Walkaway.

Ms Warburton said she was humbled by the generosity of the community.
"If giving is an indicator of the health of a city, then Whanganui is alive and well.

"Principal sponsor PwC and event partners Kensington Swan and Downer provided us with the confidence to carry out the event, and the donations from businesses in Whanganui and throughout New Zealand show that six months of work and over 30 committee meetings have paid off."

- Wanganui Chronicle

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