An amazing evening at the Aagrah Midpoint kicked off this year’s ‘Give a Gift’ scheme with hundreds turning out for a special charity gala.
Now its second year, the volunteer-run project was initially set up to bring communities together through helping local causes – Martin House Children’s Hospice and Leeds General Infirmary’s Children’s Heart Unit.
More than 500 toys and £5,000 was donated to the causes last year and now Give a Gift returns with even more charities being supported.
Announced at last weekend’s launch event, this year’s project will also support Bradford Hospital’s Children’s Charity alongside the two Leeds-based causes.
Guest speakers from all three charities attended on the night and explained some of the heart-breaking stories which they have encountered and the importance of initiatives like ‘Give a Gift’ for both the charities and families.
It was then up to the children themselves to speak in front of the hundreds of guests about real-life experiences.
Ten-year-old Siyam Siraj opened the program with an amazing message before handing over to the two mini-comperes for the evening – Hibah and Hajrah.
The pair spoke of Mehvish’s story, who was one of the young children at the LGI’s Children’s Heart Unit and unfortunately died last year. A touching moment for all involved which really reinforced why the project was running for a second year.
A heartfelt poem called ‘Baby Sister’ was read by Salah Siraj, eight, which had people in tears and silenced the whole room.
Habib Khan, Give a Gift representative, said the event was a fantastic night and was even better than he had imagined.
“It was great and we really built on last year,” he said. “We would just like to say thanks to our Give a Gift Ambassador’s: Hibah Malik, Haajra Rafique, Siyam Siraj, Salah Siraj, Aakash Maik, ShreyaNaik, Aleeza Mougal, Henah Rashid and Arooje Khan.
“Also a big thank you to the all the volunteers, especially: Amna Rafique, Janice Hargreaves, Bhranti Naik, Natasha Siraj, Faiza Rafique, Mariam, Adil, and Aisha.”
The evening came to a close with a special ZumbaZumba routine by the children before a fashion show for the grand finale.
If you would like to find out more information about the Give a Gift scheme please visit www.giveagift.org.uk