Serving Our People Reaches Fundraising Milestone

WORDS: Brigid Davey PHOTOGRAPHY Supplied

The 2021 Serving Our People (SOP) Inc. Inaugural Fundraising Gala, Black Ball d’Eleganza was the talk of the town on Saturday 8th May with some of the biggest names in Gold Coast business throwing their weight and wallets behind a powerful initiative designed to serve the most vulnerable members of our community.

An amazing $441,900 was raised through sponsorships, donations, as well as live & silent auctions on the evening. An outstanding result that SOP CEO and Founder Yas Matbouly said was “absolutely fantastic” with the support of sponsors and volunteers continues to empower SOP to deliver goods to a growing list of locales in Queensland and NSW.

“Many well-known names in Gold Coast business supported the gala and donated to raise much-needed funding as we expand our network of deliveries and we are forever grateful. It is absolutely beautiful to see the kind-hearted of all those who attended and their willingness to help and serve those in need. We are truly very lucky to have such beautiful, generous, kind, thoughtful and selfless individuals from Gold Coast, Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. The SOP team are excited about our future to and support to be more of service to all those in need.” said Mr Matbouly.

Serving Our People’ (SOP) launched last year during the height of the COVID crisis when many residents were suddenly unable to access basic necessities, including food and medicine. What started out as a small act of kindness has grown into a fully registered charity whose services now help thousands of people by delivering a variety of goods straight to their doorstep.

The Saturday evening event was Serving Our People’s first fundraising event – Black Ball d’Eleganza – and held at The Star Casino with many supporting Gold Coast businesses in attendance. Leading prestige property agency Kollosche was the naming right sponsor for the event and lead the auctioneer on the nights. Joined by a long list of big and small local businesses lending their support and presence to drive the SOP mission to the next level, the event was earmarked what can only be branded as ‘the night of all nights on the Gold Coast’.

With the support of the Abedian Foundation, with Dr. Soheil Abedian as Chairman, together with Rebecca Frizelle, Chris Freeman, Anne Abedian as well as Ron Eams on the SOP Board of Directors, make for an established and highly supported charity.

“We are thrilled to get behind a service that is genuinely helping those people in our community who most need it,” says Kollosche Managing Director Michael Kollosche.

“The mission to provide support to those in need might seem simple enough, but the impact to those on the receiving end is extremely powerful.”

The black tie event caps off an exceptional year for the Serving Our People initiative which emerged in March last year in response to the impacts of the statewide COVID lockdown. SOP delivers to many locations across South East Queensland, including Brisbane, Logan, Gold Coast, and over the border into Northern New South Wales with expansion planned for 2022 and beyond.

For the young and the elderly, those who were already sick or suffering an underlying illness, the serious risk posed by leaving home was very real.

Yas Matbouly, a Gold Coast businessman, was quick to recognise the need to home deliver basic necessities and mobilised a small army of volunteers including personal trainers, university students and graduates, young executives and business people, sportspeople and even influencers.

The charity aims to roll the service out on a national level over the next five years.