Finn gives charity big boost

Neil Finn plays at Gibbston Valley Winery, near Queenstown, on Friday night. Photo: David Williams.
Neil Finn plays at Gibbston Valley Winery, near Queenstown, on Friday night. Photo: David Williams.
New Zealand musician  Neil Finn helped raise more than $100,000 for an African charity at a glitzy event at Gibbston Valley Winery, near Queenstown, on Friday night.

Finn, who belted out classic songs like Six Months in a Leaky Boat and Fall At Your Feet, is an ambassador for charity So They Can.

Friday’s $245-a-ticket event, which attracted a 30-strong contingent from Australia, raised about $107,000, including $5000 paid for an acoustic guitar signed by the Auckland singer. The largest  individual donation from the 140 attendees was $20,000. So They Can chief executive Cassandra Treadwell, who lives in Wanaka, said the person who pledged $20,000 had been to Africa with his children to see the charity’s work for himself.

"When you’ve been over there and you meet the people on the ground and you see the difference that this kind of money can make and the education programmes that we’re running for these children, I think they realise it’s money well spent."

The fundraiser would allow the charity to build two family houses for orphaned children in Africa and feed them for two years.

So They Can raises $2.5million a year to run its education, community and economic development projects in Kenya and Tanzania.

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