The 2017 Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend Gala Dinner continues to wow it’s guests, with epic entertainment, outstanding gift bags, and an electric atmosphere! With over 1500 women strutting their way into Palladium at Crown and coming together in cheerful chatter to raise funds and show their support for children and families living with cancer.

As the ladies made their way onto the red carpet and through the golden archways, it became evident that the evening was bound to exude elegance and opulence. Making their way to the Robert Oatley Sparkling Bars, each lady raised their glass, while simultaneously admiring their new jewels. Before walking through the Palladium doors, guests enjoyed mini makeovers from the talented team at Elly Lucas, Masci Hair & Spa, and Organic Nation – ensuring that each and every lady was shining bright like a diamond!

You could feel the excitement in the room as each guest found their way to their seat to open what is sure to be our best gift bag yet! With no shortage of amazing products, we were glad to see the smiles on each person’s face from the moment they entered the venue to long after they tucked into their delectable dessert!

It was clear from early in the evening that this year, the ladies were taking the Diamonds 2017 theme ‘Let’s Dance’ very seriously, with no hesitation to get up on the dance floor from the moment Ross Wilson opened the night with his classic hits, and much reluctance to leave the floor when the ever-talented Velvet Corporation rolled out their repertoire. The ladies were also treated to an outstanding performance by the team at Transit Dance, who entertained the crowd with a routine to all of our favourite dance hits!

While the evening was all glitz and glamour, we had to remember the important reason for why we were all there; to celebrate life, show support for those who are travelling through their child’s cancer journey, and to raise funds for programs that aim to relieve some of the pressures faced by mothers who are caring for an ill child.

A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the ‘Diamond of the Year Award’ to three incredible Challenge volunteers – Cathie Morcom, Jenny Smith, and Tracey Pickersgill. These wonderful women, who were all very clearly in shock, were recognised for their outstanding dedication and support of Challenge, with each having given over 20 years of service. It was a special moment, as these three incredibly deserving women were presented their awards by the Women for Challenge Chairwoman, and 2016 ‘Diamond of the Year’ recipient, Anna Toman. Anna, who has not only chaired the committee for 11 years, but has been a member since its inception 17 years ago, then announced she will sadly be stepping down from this role. Anna, we would like to extend our sincere thanks for your ongoing commitment and support to Challenge, you should be proud of the work  you have achieved and the impact you have made.

We would love to thank Tom Gleisner and Georgia love for their exceptional efforts in hosting the event, and to the team at RT Edgar for their outstanding auctioneering on the night!

We would not be able to celebrate the success of this event, or raise the necessary funds to deliver our programs and services to our families without the incredible support and kindness of our major sponsors. Thank you to our presenting partner Bed Bath N’ Table, Sol’s Diamonds, APT, Crown, Staging Connections, Robert Oatley, Impact Digital, Masci Hair & Spa, Elly Lukas, Heritage Fine Chocolates, MKTG, and trybooking.com.

Challenge would also like to extend our thanks and acknowledge the outstanding support from all the businesses that contributed to the Main and Silent auctions and all the amazing goodies in our gift bags. Lastly a big thank you to all our Challenge volunteers, we are so appreciative of your time and efforts in ensuring our guests had a great night.

Ladies, thank you for your support in making this year’s event another spectacular success! We look forward to seeing what 2018 will bring!

You certainly danced the night away…