Dinner with ex-PM sold out

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The Hearts and Hands for Haiti fundraiser at the Oamaru Opera House next week will be a nice way of commemorating North Otago’s involvement in aiding Haiti, HHH team leader Robyn Couper says.

The event, which includes a dinner with former Prime Minister and United Nations Development Programme administrator Helen Clark, along with an art auction and the Lexus Future Opera Stars Concert, will be held at the Opera House on Monday.

HHH, a charitable trust established by Miss Couper to provide assistance to the people of Haiti after the 2010 earthquake, is holding the event to mark the anticipated completion of the Physiotheraphy Technicians Training School in Cap Haitien in 2015.

Miss Couper said it would be an enjoyable night which would raise funds to enable HHH to return to Haiti for the last time next year to complete three months of training at the school.

“I just want to encourage people to come to a good night out, knowing that it is for a really good cause.”

The event would be a good way of showing the people of North Otago how they had helped to create Haiti’s first physoptherapy training school, Miss Couper said.

“It will make a lovely closure [to the project].

“Without the generosity and support that we have had from here, this whole venture wouldn’t have even got off the ground.”

Tickets had sold out for the dinner with Ms Clark, but there were still plenty available for the concert, which would have very good music, Miss Couper said.

“The music buffs in North Otago will get a really good night of singing.”

The Lexus Future Opera Stars Concert will be hosted by renowned opera singer Rodney Macann and acclaimed accompanist Terence Dennis with performances by Bianca Andrew and Edward Laurenson from the 2014 Lexus Song Quest finals.

Miss Couper said she wanted to thank all the sponsors and artists who helped make the evening possible.

“It’s been just pure teamwork.”

The first intake for the physiotherapy school have just finished their exams and the school is now recruiting its second intake, she said.

The school will be totally self-sustainbale once HHH has completed their final trip to Haiti next year.

Miss Couper said they were currently looking for two physiotherapists to volunteer their time for the module in Haiti. Their airfare and accommodation would be paid.

Anyone interested can apply through www.haitiheartsnhands.co.nz.

The dinner will be held at the Oamaru Opera House on Monday, August 25 at 5.30pm, followed by an art auction with works from Otago artists.

The Lexus Future Opera Stars concert begins at 8.30pm. A special deal has been arranged for the concert – buy two tickets you get a third one free.

By RUBY HARFIELD