Kisharon raised a record £1.12m at the ‘Success Without Limits’ annual dinner at the Lancaster Hotel in London on Sunday. The fundraising total was all the more astonishing given than many of the 700 guests had already pledged financial support towards the £12.5 million needed to fund the building of the new Kisharon School. The fundraising total will go towards the £2m Kisharon needs to raise each year which is not covered by local authority payments and parental contributions.
Speakers included Kisharon parent and comedian Ashley Blaker and US disability pioneer Keith Jones, who has cerebral palsy. Among the guests were Transport Secretary Chris Grayling MP, Lord Feldman, Lady Daniela Pears, the Hon Andrew Wolfson and Rabbi Joseph and Mrs Dweck.
Ashley told how he adopted his daughter Sora, who has Down’s Syndrome, when he already had two children with autism. He said: “Kisharon looks at all our children and says, ‘we know you and we choose you’.”
Adam Castleton, dinner chair with his wife, Emma, a Kisharon Trustee, told guests that following the birth of their son Elias, now a pupil at Kisharon School, doctors had told them to prepare for a life with a child who would achieve very little, and to be ready for a bleak future. He said: “This was absolutely not true. Thanks to Kisharon, Elias’s life has been filled with success.”
Chief Executive Bev Jacobson said: “We are here to ensure that every individual with learning disabilities is able to live an independent, inclusive life in the community, rich with education, training, employment and social opportunities.”
Eli Cohen, Chaim Dovid Rotenberg and others supported by Kisharon made hamotzi and did bentsching for guests. They prepared gift bags which were handed out at the end of the evening.
To watch Kisharon’s 2018 appeal film and keynote speeches, click here.
PHOTOS: John Rifkin<< Back