111 people attended MAI’s second Charity Dinner and Auction on Saturday 1st March at Pembroke College, Oxford. Following a drinks reception and 3 course dinner, John Earwicker – MAI’s Executive Director introduced the Embo project and interviewed a volunteer – Natalie – about her experience of visiting the work. Following her moving description of the needs of Embo, Graham Penny of Graham Penny Auctions encouraged the sale of 25 varied auction lots that had been donated by local businesses, entrepreneurs and MAI Board members and supporters.

Noel Garner, an artist from Cambridge had donated a splendid oil painting of Porthleven Harbour at sunset – a calm scene compared to the recent violent storms that devastated the harbour. To everyone’s amazement, he produced a wonderful oil pastels sketch of the banqueting hall on the spot, providing a surprise 25th auction lot.

The evening was praised by many who attended. “Congratulations on a great event,” said one. “The dinner was particularly good,” wrote an experienced Oxford colleges diner! One email told of “a fantastic good atmosphere, delightful kitchen and splendid company.”

In all the evening raised in excess of £7,300 to provide further funding of the palliative care work undertaken by our wonderful Partners in KwaZulu Natal. John Earwicker remarked: “We are so grateful to the many supporters of MAI who gave items or bought them. I am especially grateful to local business people who have supported us without any previous awareness of MAI. This has helped us raise a sum that has exceeded our expectations.”