A Cornwall-wide charity smashed its fundraising target with its anniversary celebrations. 

The Samaritans of Cornwall at Truro held its 50th anniversary ball and charity auction at the Eden Project, to raise funds for its life-saving and life-changing services. 

With a target of £5,000, the event raised more than £10,000 from ticket sales, an auction and raffle; plus a donation to start the night of £5,000 generously presented by Kallis Solicitors. 

Sue Wilkins, director of Cornwall Samaritans said: “We are delighted. As an independently registered charity, we must raise all our own funds locally to provide our services here in Cornwall. 

“Our ball featured an auction and raffle with wonderful prizes thanks to Cornish Spliced, Cornish Wave Surf School, Kallis Solicitors, Josie Purcell, Porthilly Shellfish, Naturally Learning, Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens, Helston Railway, John Dane, Steins The Seafood, Carbis Bay Hotel and Estate, St Austell Brewery, Anna Clagett at Highcliffe, Duchy Nursery, Bodmin Plant and Herb Nursery and Uzella Court Antiques. 

Sue added: “We also received event support in a range of ways and would like to thank LVMH in conjunction with the Rick Stein Group for the welcome champagne, Roger Lapin the illusionist, Abbotts Event Hire for help with chairs, Vega Rosa for beautiful table and room decorations, Eventy – Marketing & PR for help with securing prizes and PR, Charlie Hopkinson for photography, Vospers for their donation to help with costs of the event.” 

Guests were in attendance from across Cornwall, including Samaritans chair Keith Leslie, patrons, Rick and Sara Stein; the Bishop of Truro the Right Reverend Hugh Nelson; Deputy Mayor of Truro Cllr Sam Rabey, Tim Owen of ‘3 Dads Walking and David ‘Fitz’ Fizgerald as MC and auctioneer.

The funds raised will help Cornwall Samaritans to continue to provide mental health services in our county, which has the highest rate of suicide in the country, high self-harming rates and stretched statutory mental health provision. 

In the past 12 months alone, Cornwall Samaritans has answered more than 20,000 calls for help via telephone and webchat; Cornwall’s Samaritans feed into a national network of support where the next available Samaritans answers a call.