North East Connected

North East Children’s Charity Breaks out the Glad Rags for Final Fundraising Push of 2017

Tyneside based international children’s charity COCO (Comrades of Children Overseas) is making a final major push in its fundraising calendar at a glittering black-tie ball.  Following a hugely successful year which saw the charity surpass £4 million in donations since its foundation, the COCO Ball will take place at the Hilton Hotel in Gateshead on the evening of Saturday 11 November.  Organisers hope that the event will raise thousands of pounds to support projects that improve the quality of education for children living in poor and marginalised communities in East Africa.

As well as raising money and outlining future plans, the event will showcase some of the work that COCO has undertaken over the last 12 months.  Guests will hear about COCO’s Schools for Life programme which marked its three-year anniversary recently.  Since its inception, Schools for Life has enabled 2,360 young people from eight communities in three countries – Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya – to access sustainable education in a safe environment.  The programme covers six key elements; shelterpower, water and sanitation, foodsports and recreation, and entrepreneurship.

The COCO Ball will be hosted by BBC Radio Newcastle presenter Anna Foster, with entertainment provided by one of the region’s best-known party bands, Storm.  The evening will also feature an auction packed with an array of sought-after lots, including many provided by the charity’s business supporters from the region, and items that the COCO’s co-founder Steve Cram has managed to secure from his sporting contacts.

Lucy Philipson, CEO of COCO, comments: “This has been a landmark year for COCO and we were delighted to reach the £4 million fundraising milestone.  We’re now determined to push on from that and raise even more money to help sustain our vital work in East Africa.  As well as being our last big push of the year, the COCO Ball promises to be a glitzy and glamorous affair and will be a great way to celebrate our successes, and look to the future, with some wonderful supporters.  The emphasis of the night will be on having fun, but guests will also play a part in helping young people access the education that can allow them to build successful futures for themselves.”

COCO was co-founded by Steve Cram and British Army Major Jim Panton in 2000 and its headquarters are in Newcastle.  COCO invests in small, sustainable, community led initiatives that can make a big difference at a local level.  COCO has supported over 50 transformational projects in 16 countries, positively impacting the lives of more than 175,000 people.

To find out more about the work of COCO or to donate visit, find the charity on Facebook or follow @COCO_Charity on Twitter.

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