Dear Honoured Guests
Welcome to the second International Arbitration Charity Ball, in the historic, majestic surroundings of the Great Hall of the Guildhall in the City of London.
Those who attended the inaugural International Arbitration Charity Ball will know that on that night in September 2010, we raised more than £200,000, every penny of which went to our chosen charity, Save the Children. This is a charity which has, for nearly a century, achieved what its title suggests - it has saved tens of millions of children the world over - from death, from disease, from starvation, from poverty and from exploitation. But it can only do it with our help. Tonight you will hear, and see, how the money we raised in 2010 was spent, and what we can achieve through our fundraising tonight. It is not a message of doom and despair. It is a message of hope. What Save the Children has done, and what it can do, with your help, will astound you.
Through its work, children can hope for a brighter future with better health, education and basic human rights. Disasters continue to strike the world, and when they do there is no time to lose. In 2011, Save the Children responded to no less than 45 emergencies in 38 different countries, which helped over THREE MILLION children to survive and thrive, against the odds.
We don’t need to remind you that we are all members of a very privileged part of the international community. We represent wealthy individuals and corporations, in disputes involving billions of dollars. Tonight, our common cause is to help create a better life for disadvantaged children all over the planet. It is our opportunity, if not our responsibility, to give something back.
In addition to the income already raised from ticket sales, we hope to raise additional funds this evening. In this booklet you will find details of the exceptional auction prizes available. And this time, we have gone digital for the silent auction. The tablet on the table is not an iPad or a Kindle. It is a bidding machine. Which is what we want as many of you as possible to become!
In keeping with IACB tradition, we also have a table challenge. You may have spotted the giant martini glass in the centre of your tables filled with bright pink water. Your challenge tonight is to turn that water clear. If your table raises £500 (enough to achieve clean water for an entire school in Ethiopia), let one of the hostesses know and the water in your glass will be turned clear. For each additional £100 donation, a special light will be added. If you reach £1,000 we promise a special surprise! Full details are in the card on your place setting. The form includes a Gift Aid option for UK taxpayers.
The Committee is delighted that tonight’s event is sold out with over 625 guests from around the world attending. We are very grateful for the support of the many firms and institutions that have bought tables or tickets. We would also like to thank the many donors of the auction prizes and other organisations that have contributed in other ways. Particular thanks go to TransPerfect who have sponsored the after party that will take place beneath your feet!
Finally, our very special thanks go to FTI Consulting, for their significant donation and assistance in making this evening possible.
Thank you again, and please - PLEASE - give as generously as you can!
The International Arbitration Charity Ball Committee