WorKingOptions first Fundraiser a huge success!

28th February 2013

WorKingOptions hosted a sell-out fundraising event at the Floradita Club in Soho, with Tom Chaplin (Keane) headlining the outstanding show.

Compeered by Chris Hollins, the show featured a terrific discussion between Michael Vaughan, Andrew Straus, Lawrence D’Allaglio and WorKingOptions ambassador; Jason Leonard, who shared some England Captaincy tales (and a few other unprompted stories.)


Paul Monk and Fiona Mack presented an overview of WorKingOptions and key players from the Luton Sixth form Scholarship pilot were presented on stage to the packed audience.


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The evening was rounded off by Tom and The Hound Dogs playing until the early hours, a selection of great hits and other songs.

The evening raised over £50,000 and this money will be crucial in enabling WO to roll-out the programme to another 10 – 15 towns and cities during the coming year.

Paul Monk said: “We owe a huge vote of thanks to everyone who came and supported the event, I was overwhelmed with offers of personal support for the programme and stunned by the generosity of those who attended! Thank you from everyone at WorKingOptions!”

“Huge well done to you all for organising such a fantastic event. Paul, your speech was spot on and from the heart, engaged a very noisy crowd really well! I hope we raised lots of money… it looked positive with the bidding…so an update on the amount, as I can’t wait…..” Sufian Sadiq (Luton Sixth Form College Business Course Leader).

“So many people approached both Paul and I on Thursday night wanting to be actively involved in one way or another, which is such a great testament to what we already know, and that is that WO is a fabulous initiative and can make a real difference to young people. Very happy to be involved with you wonderful, wonderful people. Thank You All!” Fiona Mack (Programme Director).

“Thank you both very much for inviting Chris and I to last night's event. We really appreciate your generosity in doing that, and it was great to see at first hand the mobilising effect of your work allied to the WorKingOptions purpose. We were both struck in particular by the strength of the relationships that WorKingOptions is enabling with the students you are helping, the volunteers you are inspiring, and the college.
I also think that you have chosen the best possible ambassador in Jason Leonard and in many ways his world cup winning rugby achievements are the least valuable of his assets to you. His embodiment of your values, through his commitment to developing his capability in multiple fields (carpenter, family building business, world class rugby player, insurance broker, media analyst, ambassador), hard work, persistence (particularly in maintaining 'real world' work as a professional rugby player) and humility (in spite of towering sporting achievement) are the marks of a greatness to which we can all aspire!

I imagine that finding the levels of engagement that each of the businesses that were represented at the fund-raiser will want to commit to now will be key to building the programme's scale and sustainability. For our part we'd love to enable the relationship with Reading College for you and would be delighted to help in any other way that you would like.

Thanks again and congratulations on a successful fund-raiser." Kevin Garrett (Waitrose).

“Thank you for a wonderful evening last night and a great launch for WorKingOptions. Seeing the young people on stage and in the video was quite something and an awesome start. Clearly the sporting and rock legends were exactly that. I really appreciated the invitation and Jason and Katie-Ann were great company, so much appreciated the seating plan! Obviously this was a fundraiser, so I am sure you won’t mind another contribution which I have put on the Virgin Giving website.” Stuart Wilson (Burtons Biscuits).

“We both really enjoyed our evening with you in London. Your charity is amazing and it was fantastic to see the level of support that you had for its future.” Judith and Mark Price (Waitrose).