A successful benefit dinner requires four things: a great host, amazing food, an outstanding guest speaker and a generous audience. Islamic Relief’s ‘Living the Legacy’ fundraising dinner checked all these boxes, making the event a huge triumph in the name of charity.
On 8 December 2017, Islamic Relief South Africa held a benefit dinner titled ‘Living the Legacy’ at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg.
The dinner was organised to raise funds for afflicted women and children in war-torn Syria, in an attempt to meet their daily needs. Each attendee donated R350 while corporate tables contributed R5000 to the event. Funds raised will go towards providing hampers for the distressed victims of war. A standard hamper for one female is valued at R1500, and contains basic necessities such as toiletries and groceries to last for the duration of a month. Hampers for children are valued at R600 each, and comprise a basic school pack and a month’s supply of food.
MC, Ashraf Garda did a brilliant job of anchoring the event and entertaining the guests. After being educated on how Islamic Relief facilitates the delivery of aid to war-torn countries, nasheed artist, Tariq Uwais Malinga beautifully performed a few melodies.
Honorary guest speaker, Chief Mandela took to the podium to share the legacy of his late grandfather, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. He touched on what an inspirational human being our former president was, mostly because he always stood up for what he believed in. Madiba may not have been of Islamic faith, however, his staunch sense of right and wrong, and his resolute moral compass allowed him to stay clear of the sometimes unprincipled influences that come with money and power. Chief Mandela also mentioned how his grandfather would stand up for the people of tormented countries such as Palestine and Syria. He describes how Nelson Mandela would travel the world to raise funds and awareness about these wars, and even when other leaders at the time wanted to buy his silence or have him turn a blind eye to the victims’ struggles and urged him to break off all ties with the ‘enemies’ of the American state, he would decline their offers and stand for what he believed in.
The level of generosity and solidarity portrayed by the guests was overwhelming with even little children (who accompanied their parents) pledging to help out. The benefit dinner was an eye-opener to the severe struggles faced by the Syrian women and children on a daily basis.
Ending the evening on a lighter note, comedian Joey Rasdien had the crowd in stitches.
The success of the event can be attributed to the amazing efforts of the Islamic Relief management and staff, and the generosity of those who supported the event through their attendance and pledges to assist vulnerable women and children who are at the centre of Islamic Relief’s emergency humanitarian efforts. A remarkable total of R1.1 million was raised in one night! This goes to show how much can be achieved when we put our hearts, goodwill and financial contributions together.
If you would like to make a contribution towards this worthy cause, please contact Islamic Relief SA on 0800 111 898 or donate online via www.islamic-relief.org.za