Thursday, 27 October 2011

Recognition for Theresa

Monday the 17th of October saw the Annual Women of the Year Lunch take place at the InterContinental Hotel in London. For 56 years this ceremony has celebrated the contribution of "exceptional women who have each proved an inspiration to others through their courage, selflessness and dedication." 
MfM Coordinator and "Women of the Year" Invitee Theresa Haine
This year the ceremony had an extra-special significance for all of us here at Money for Madagascar because, rubbing shoulders with luminaries such as Maureen Lipman, Sandi Toksvig, Bianca Jagger, Esther Rantzen, Sue MacGregor, Juliet Stevenson, Shirley Williams, Joanna Trollope and Lulu, was our very own Coordinator Theresa Haine.

Theresa declared herself "moved, honoured and rather overwhelmed" to find herself among the select group of extra-ordinary women from around the UK whose achievements and contribution to the community were celebrated during a heart-warming, inspiring and emotional ceremony.

Theresa (far left)  with some of her fellow "Women of the Year"
Invited in recognition of more than two decades of work supporting vulnerable people and communities in Madagascar, Theresa was proud to attend on behalf of the many inspirational people who have helped raise funds for Money for Madagascar through the years. She also followed in the footsteps of her mother who herself was a past invitee to the  "Women of the Year"  Lunch in recognition of her work during the Second World War.

Having hugely enjoyed the touching and at times extremely humorous contributions of the guest speakers and shared a table with a number of cast members of the Archers, Theresa's highlight of the day was the attendance of suffragette Hettie Dorlan who was honoured at the ceremony. Theresa takes up the story: "Hettie, who is now 106 years old, was out in Trafalgar Square demonstrating for peace last month! She got a prolonged standing ovation and was presented with a huge basket of flowers.  I just felt it was a privilege to be in the same room as her."

Theresa at the awards.
Speaking of the ceremony, Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, President of the Women of the Year, said: “The magic of this event is that it does what no other awards ceremony manages to do. It brings together the most fabulous women from the widest range of geographical, social, ethnic and political backgrounds – from the very well-known to unsung heroines doing outstanding work in their community... Their achievements, dedication and passion are an inspiration to women everywhere, encouraging us all to fulfill our ambitions, support others and stand up for what we believe in.”

All of us here at Money for Madagascar take great pleasure in congratulating Theresa and also offering our heartfelt thanks to the many friends, donors and  supporters whose kindness and dedication has helped achieve so much.