Fundraising lunch for Sandy Gall’s Afghanistan Appeal

Thursday 8 October 2015

John Casson  has been a trustee of Sandy Gall’s Afghanistan Appeal (SGAA) since January 2011. He was invited onto the board of trustees because of his expertise in fundraising.

sandy-gallSandy Gall CMG, CBE

Founded by Sandy Gall in 1986, a year after he made his first television documentary about the resistance of the people of Afghanistan to the Russian invasion, SGAA’s first aim was to provide high-quality artificial prostheses for amputees who had suffered in the war and to train Pakistani and Afghan technicians to make them.

Since those early days, SGAA has also provided much-needed physiotherapy, and ten years ago it brought to the country the Ponseti technique of treatment for club foot, a condition that is prevalent among Afghan babies.

The Ponseti technique is named after the orthopaedic surgeon who pioneered it. This technique treats club foot largely by physiotherapy rather than by surgery. Since its introduction to the SGAA clinics in 2005, over 1,000 children under the age of two years have been successfully treated each year.

In order to raise funds for the charity, John organised a lunch for many of the regular donors and supporters of SGAA at the Turf Club in London on Wednesday 30 September 2015, which provided the opportunity for them to meet Sandy and the charity’s orthopaedic consultants.

There was an overwhelming response to the invitations sent out, so much so that all the places were quickly taken, resulting in a waiting list for tickets and the potential for a similar event to be organised in the spring of 2016.

Fifty guests attended the lunch, which was interspersed with talks from SGAA trustees and orthopaedic consultants Jeanne Hartley and Philip Henman, who regularly visit Afghanistan to assist with treatment and training of the Ponseti technique. Sandy also gave a summary of the current situation in the country.

The lunch was a huge success, and everyone left with a far better understanding of the work of Sandy Gall’s Afghanistan Appeal.