Manchester United players and celebrity guests turned out in style for the 14th annual United for UNICEF Gala Dinner, at which over £200,000 was raised for UNICEF, the world’s leading children’s organisation, beating last year’s record total of £166,000.
Hosted by Sky News sports presenter, Jacquie Beltrao, the black-tie event is the highlight of the Club’s social calendar and was attended by the full first-team squad and partners, plus manager David Moyes and coaching staff.
Britpop legends Ocean Colour Scene headlined the event and other celebrities in attendance included Peter Andre, Shayne Ward, Kym Lomas, Antony Cotton, Catherine Tyldesley, Brooke Vincent and Chris Bissom, plus Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys of eighties band OMD.
Over the last 14 years, the United for UNICEF partnership has raised over £3 million, impacting on the lives of over 3.4 million vulnerable children worldwide. It is the longest running partnership of its kind between a sporting organisation and a global children’s organisation.
The partnership has recently been renewed for a further three years and the Club has pledged to raise a further £1 million during that period. This money will go towards helping transform the lives of vulnerable children in Vietnam who are affected by abuse, exploitation and neglect.
Guests at the event were able to support UNICEF by bidding on money-can’t-buy prizes in the auction and by purchasing inspired gifts that represent the provision of care for children in Vietnam.
Enjoying his first Gala Dinner at the helm of the Club, David Moyes commented:
“The crisis in the Philippines this month puts into perspective UNICEF’s vital work with children throughout the world. It’s been a tremendous evening for myself, the players and the many guests who have come to Old Trafford tonight and it makes it all the more special knowing that the money raised will go towards our target of £1million for United for UNICEF.”
Patrice Evra, who holds UNICEF close to his heart due to their work in his native Senegal, said,
“I always look forward to the UNICEF dinner and I appreciate that we keep doing this event every year. It’s important to understand this is not just a normal dinner; it is for the children and the many people that UNICEF helps around the world.
“For me, as a father, I know how important it is to see my children eating food and having a bed to sleep in; when I think of other children who don’t have these things I feel really sad and that’s why, when I get the chance to help other people, I will do it straight away.”
UNICEF UK Executive Director, David Bull concluded
“UNICEF is extremely proud of our long-standing partnership with Manchester United and the continued support we receive from the Club and its fans. We are extremely grateful to everyone who attended this evening or bid on the charity auction. The amazing amount of money raised tonight will help us to reach even more children in need of our help.”
All pictures are copyright of the respective photographers, sourced from the Daily Mail website.