Saturday, 4 December 2021

Pakistani students in London raise funds for eye hospitals

LONDON: Pakistan’s College Society hosted their annual flagship Charity Ball ‘Shaam’ at the Hilton Kensington Hotel here to raise funds for a charity working to establish eyes hospitals in Pakistan. Imperial College London’s Pakistan Students Society President Anam told that the evening titled “Shaam” raises awareness of and celebrates Pakistani culture as well as British Pakistani culture in order to bring the two cultures closer and highlight their distinctive nature. A glamorous evening of festivities and entertainment all in aid of the Graham Layton Trust (sister charity to LRBT Eye Hospitals in Pakistan) began with a drinks reception, allowing guests the opportunity to mingle with students and alumni from all over the UK. The 300 guests included students from Imperial College as well as students from a variety of London universities, many who had commuted from cities such as Leeds and Birmingham for the sell out event. While sipping on their mango lassi, students were able to appreciate the venue but also have fun at the photobooth, chocolate founatain and gol gappay stall. The three course meal catered by TKC Chaudhrys was a true reflection of traditional Pakistani cuisine and was savoured by all.

The evening was commenced with a welcome speech by President Anam Malik, followed by word from Dr.Rehan Rajput, Ophthalmic surgeon and LRBT volunteer who spoke to the audience about his experiences with LRBT and how their 17 fully equipped hospitals and 39 Community Eye Care Centres mean that virtually all Pakistanis are within 3 hours travel of free eye care and the services provided are second to none. LRBT has touched the lives of more than 3 million to date and the profound work done by this organisation was celebrated by all. Entertainment included a student acapella group Surcery singing a mixture of Bollywood and English music as well as another student duo signing classics such as Valerie, captivating the audience and getting them excited for the headliner. Britain’s Got Talent finalists Signature, combining Bhangra with Micheal Jackson dances, dazzled the audience with their moves and energy. The highlight of the night, dancers themselves loved teasing the audience and teaching them how to bhangra.

The charity ball was supported by many sponsors from across London, including professional networking companies such as Open London and the British Pakistani Foundation, media giant Virgin as well as events company Sweet Stations and financial firm Deloitte.  President Anam Malik led a committee of 18 students in preparation of Shaam. “I’m delighted how the event has turned out to be. My team has been working incredibly hard for months now, from the Vice President Anas Tahir to treasurers Areeb Mian and Faraz Sharif to secretary Nida Hafiz, along with events officers, publicity managers and fresher representatives, who put their heart into promoting the event and making it the best Shaam Imperial College has seen so far.” Ms. Malik shared before adding, ” I’m especially pleased to see that almost half of our audience is made of British, Indian, African, Bangladeshi or Arab students; our aim here at PakSoc is to reach the wider student community to spread the word about Pakistani heritage, culture and charities, and to ensure Pakistan is known world wide as an open, inclusive and peaceful nation.”

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