On 9th March, we hosted our annual Night of Light Gala to raise vital funds for the charity. This event was particularly special as it heralded our 30th Anniversary year as a registered charity.
The Gala was held at the prestigious 5* Pan Pacific London, and was attended by 260 guests, including our Royal Patron, The Duchess of Gloucester, our longest-serving Patron, Sir Trevor McDonald OBE, key donors and corporate supporters, and families affected by missing.
Thanks to all those who attended and supported the event, it was our most successful gala ever, surpassing our ambitious fundraising goal of £300,000!
The night kicked off with a champagne reception and a fun game of Heads & Tails led by our Fundraising Board Chair, Mark Pumfrey; followed by a surprise video message from Hollywood legend, Michael Douglas.
Afterwards, our Chair of Trustees, Justin McLaren, and CEO, Jo Youle OBE, set a more serious note; and our excellent MC, Missing People Ambassador and CEO of TLC Lions, Gian Power, then guided us through a night filled with inspiring stories of hope from our own Helpline Heroes alongside families who have been affected by missing. We also honoured two particularly special supporters, players of People’s Postcode Lottery and Richard Lockwood who were worthy winners of our inaugural Lifeline Awards, having both raised over £1million for the charity over the years. We even had live entertainment throughout the evening from the Four Poofs and a Piano, known for their comic tunes during Jonathan Ross’ Friday night chat show.
There were many highlights during the evening but the crowning moment was undoubtedly when we were told the amount we had raised, thanks to our Gold and Bronze Supporters, and all the guests who generously hosted tables, bid on a fantastic line-up of auction prizes (facilitated and donated by so many wonderful supporters, including members of our incredible Fundraising Board); and pledged throughout the night. Thanks too to our fabulous auctioneer, Tom Best, who oversaw the auction and pledge with great charm and aplomb.
It was truly a night to remember, shining a bright light of hope in the dark world of missing, and a real testament to the empathy and generosity of everyone who attended and all those who gave their time to support the biggest fundraising event in our 30 years as a registered charity.
THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts.