Kenya Ball 2010 - A great success!

18 April 2010
The 6th Annual Kenya Ball was held in the Maryborough Hotel, Cork on Saturday 17th April. FOL Supporters celebrated in style in the beautiful surrounds of the hotel. The weather was fantastic which led to a relaxed VIP reception and drinks reception before the party began. The VIP Guests included the Deputy Lord Mayor of Cork Councillor Emmet O Halloran and his partner Carol Petite, Minister Michael Martin, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Her Excellency Ms Catherine Mwangi, Kenyan Ambassador to Kenya, and Mr Willie Lyons, Business Development Director, Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland. 230 guests attended this magnificent event hosted by FOL. The theme of the ball was Water. Kenya Ball 2010Kenya Ball 2010Kenya Ball

The Deputy Lord Mayor opened the evening by recalling how he has known FOL since 2005 when he began supporting them through several fundraisers. He compared the need for water in Kenya to the need experienced in Cork city in November last year. Minister Michael Martin congratulated FOL for their work in Kenya, and added that FOL were making a positive contribution to development there. He spoke of the water, health and education projects FOL undertakes in Kenya. H.E. Catherine Muigai MwangiAfter dinner, the Kenyan Ambassador thanked FOL for supporting her country. She said that she felt humbled by the work taking place there, and said this help was really needed. She has known FOL since coming to Ireland 3 years ago, and believes that they are making a difference to people's lives in Londiani. Maria Kidney, Chairperson of FOL gave the keynote address where she looked back on the past 12 months of FOL's work making a special reference to FOL's volunteer support base. FOL is extremely grateful for all its volunteers, without whom it could not do what it does. She outlined how FOL's projects were sustainable through partnership with Government Ministries in Kenya, other larger NGOS and local community groups on the ground in Londiani. She spoke about "Positive Development" and gave the example of the Ndubusat Water project where the introduction of clean water has resulted in 117 girls attended a newly built Girls' Secondary School. But, all of the projects would not be possible without the support of the Irish Government. She thanked Irish Aid for their support to date, but urged the government to continue their overseas aid programme and not to cut aid further. She explained that Overseas Aid works, it saves lives, it is value for money (70 cents in €100), and it is what Irish people are good at. Irish people have made positve differences all over the world. The presentation concluded with a 4 minute video showing the projects in Kenya, with interviews from those in the communities on the ground there who say "Thank You FOL you are making a difference". After the formalities were done, the supporters danced the night away! Music was provided by 80 Something and Ted Dunne DJ, and continued into the small hours. Of the 230 guests, 104 had been to Kenya with FOL. The energy and excitement in the room led to a fantastic atmosphere which contributed to the success of the night. Mr Stephen Bolger from Dublin won the 2 flights to Mombassa presented by Mr Mubarak Habib, Sales & Marketing Director, Maasailand Adventures. Thank you to all who supported the Kenya Ball 2010 and we look forward to next year's event! Click here for photos of the Kenya Ball