Scottish pop sensation Michelle McManus hosted a special preview of her upcoming Winter Wonderland show in honour of CHAS this past Sunday (2 December), at a fundraising event held in Edinburgh's Prestonfield House.
Backed by SoundSational Community Choir, the singing diva and dedicated CHAS supporter performed a set which featured stories galore and a spellbinding cover of 'White Christmas'. This exclusive sneak peek of Michelle's 2018 show, accompanied by an afternoon tea, raised an astounding total of £52,114. Prizes included a sparkling Laing's Elizabeth Collection diamond necklace, United Airlines tickets for two to New York City, and a £1,000 cash prize cracker game sponsored by the Bertram Nursery Group.
After a few rounds of teas, cakes and a wee glass of prosecco, Edinburgh band Bleeker were also on hand with a set of Christmas pop classics to get the crowd rocking their Festive Footwear on the dancefloor.
Guest of honour was Pauline Campbell, mother to Ruby (9) and Riley (8), who have made use of Rachel House in Kinross and our CHAS at Home support services since Ruby underwent treatment for severe tracheal problems as a baby. Pauline shared how CHAS have supported her family through some of the most difficult times imaginable, including during the festive season.
Michelle McManus said: "I've been hosting fundraisers in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen for CHAS for five years now and I love it. The ladies are always up for a laugh and we get to play games, hear from inspirational CHAS parents and raise money for an incredible cause.
"This Winter Wonderland Afternoon Tea was particularly special for me, giving guests an exclusive preview of my Christmas show with the incredibly talented SoundSational Choir. And what a successful afternoon it was! It's not a Christmas party until you've belted Fairytale of New York at the top of your lungs in your festive frock.
"Hearing from CHAS Mum Pauline really drove home how important events like these are to the families who need CHAS's support. All I want for Christmas is for CHAS families to enjoy the time they have together. CHAS are giving families that chance."
Criona Knight, CHAS Head of Philanthropy and Partnerships, said: "Occasions like these mean everything to CHAS. This Winter Wonderland fundraiser marks a heartening foot forward in our festive campaign."
"Without our incredible supporters, we wouldn't be able to raise the vital funds needed to provide the hospice services that children and families across Scotland rely so heavily on. I'd like to thank everyone who attended and gave so generously."
"We make sure that no matter how short a family's time together may be, it is filled with happiness and fun. We keep the joy alive by helping families to celebrate the lives of their children while they are together, and to honour their memory when they are gone.
"Three children die of a life-shortening condition every week in Scotland, and at present, we're only reaching one of those families. Our ambition is to reach every single one and offer our services, which is why events like Winter Wonderland are so important in helping us raise funds and awareness of our work."
You can help us reach our festive target, and have some fun at the same time. As part of our Christmas drive, CHAS are asking all Scots to take part in Festive Footwear Friday to raise vital funds to keep the smiles on kids' faces. Slip into your festive slippers, shuffle to work in your sparkly shoes, or rock your party socks - then donate just £2 to help this extraordinary charity.
CHAS know that Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year for every family and that includes those with children who may be facing their last festive season. With our two hospices, Rachel House in Kinross and Robin House in Balloch, as well as home-care support, CHAS help families enjoy a fun and laughter-filled Christmas, making memories that last a lifetime.
But it comes at a cost. Just one day's care in Robin and Rachel House is £5,650 each and it costs CHAS £12,750 every day to provide care in hospices, homes and in hospitals. In December alone, CHAS will spend more than £400,000 to make sure children and families get to enjoy precious time together in a relaxed, caring and joyous environment.