Avanta Helps Put Spark In Charity Winter Ball
A long-standing supporter of Sparks, Avanta was a sponsor of the gala evening at the London Hilton hotel, the social highlight in the charity's calendar. Over 800 people attended the event for an evening of champagne, dinner, auction and live entertainment.
The special guest of honour was Sparks' Royal Patron, HRH Princess Michael of Kent, who was joined by a glittering array of sporting heroes and celebrities. Olympic legends Ben Ainslie and James Cracknell were joined by Kenny and Gabby Logan, and racing icon, Richard Dunwoody. All the money raised by the event will help fund pioneering research that has a practical, positive impact on the lives of babies and small children.
A poignant moment came when James Cracknell took to the stage to emotionally explain why he has dedicated his high-profile new South Pole race challenge over Christmas and the New Year to raising money for Sparks in memory of his baby niece, Eva, who died of oxygen deprivation at birth at just 6 days old. James was joined on stage by his brother-in-law, Jonathan Furniss, Eva's father, who moved members of the audience to tears as he spoke about Eva's photographs and a family video of his daughter's six short days of life played on the big screen behind him.
Sparks is at the forefront of cutting edge research into oxygen deprivation at birth and some of the money raised at the Ball will support that research. Previous research funded by Sparks led to the development of the Cooling Cap, now widely used in the NHS, which has reduced the number of babies who die or suffer severe brain damage as a result of birth asphyxiation.
Said James Cracknell, who is being joined by his close friend Ben Fogle in the South Pole race which is to be the subject of a major BBC documentary series, "The vital work Sparks is carrying out in the field of body and brain cooling can spare more parents like my sister Louise and her husband Jon going through the terrible ordeal that resulted in Eva's death. The Sparks Winter Ball and the support of event sponsors like Avanta plays a major role in raising funding and awareness of Sparks research and save the lives of more children like Eva."
Avanta enjoys a special relationship with Sparks, which is the company's designated charity. Earlier this year, Avanta sponsored the annual Sparks Race Day, which raised over £15,000. The event is a permanent and increasingly popular fixture in the commercial property social calendar.
David Alberto, Avanta's Chief Executive, said: "Sparks supports some of the most important research being undertaken today into childhood illnesses and we're delighted to be associated with such a worthwhile cause. The Winter Ball was a fantastic evening and it is heart-warming to receive such widespread support and raise so much money."
Colleen La Fontaine from Sparks said: "Once again, Avanta have proved to be tremendous supporters of Sparks and we are very grateful for the company's continued commitment to helping us raise funds which are making a genuine difference to the lives of babies and small children."
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The formula attracts small and medium sized businesses to FTSE 250 companies alike. The theory that a small business occupier and a major corporate want the same thing and are largely driven by location, quality and price, is central to Avanta's business philosophy.
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