The ladies’ night was again held at the idyllic and wheel chair accessible “Il-Veduta Restaurant” in Rabat, where we were able to host 33 ladies and had 18 volunteers giving a helping hand. The owners of the restaurant very kindly offered us a set menu at a reduced rate for all our patients, who all enjoyed this relaxed evening.
The reunion was well attended with over 90 guests turning up for this relaxing evening held in the beautiful grounds of Meridiana Wine Estate in Ta’ Qali. The venue and wine was very kindly sponsored by Messrs. Meridiana Wine Estate Ltd., a delicious pasta buffet was setup by Chef Jesmond Vassallo and once again were offered 2 tickets for the Joseph Calleja Concert kindly sponsored by NNG promotions. It was an enjoyable evening all round, where everyone had the opportunity to catch up with old and new acquaintances and at the same time donating towards a worthy cause.
The popular fund-raising card party was once again held at Villa Arrigo, and was very well attended with a total of 162 rummy players and 28 Bridge players, who where joined by 7 volunteers. A food stall was set-up to sell delicious homemade cakes, pies and other treats, a raffle was also held with some lovely prizes. This event is a very important one in VOTO’s calendar of events as through it we are able to finance the Children’s programme during MASMOM’s yearly pilgrimage to Lourdes.
This year’s Lenten talk by Fr. Savio at The Salesians Oratory in Sliema was very well attended with 23 members and aspirants showing up. The topic was “Whom do you say I Am?” A very interesting reflection about Who is God and how are we to re-light the fire in us. After mass we shared some time together with some wine & sandwiches, where everyone had an opportunity to chat with each other.
The Volunteers of the Order recently hosted 116 guests at a Fundraising Gala Dinner at the Casino Maltese in Valletta to celebrate 30 years of work in the fields of spiritual, social and medical welfare.
Part of the proceeds of this event will support the renovation of a donated property, currently being refurbished into a shelter which will provide accommodation to young homeless people. The project is an initiative of the National Federation of Past Pupils and Friends of Don Bosco in Malta, in partnership with the Maltese Association of the Order of Malta.
The rest of the proceeds will continue to finance the organisation’s ongoing charitable work with adults and children in need. It is estimated that each year, VOTO assists an average of 80 to 90 families in need with the potential of helping many more.
This year the VOTO Council hosted 54 adults and 12 children to a memorable Christmas party which was held at the Marsa Sports Club. 15 volunteers helped out this year, Father Christmas made a special appearance and distributed blankets to all the adults and boxes of sweets & cupcakes to the children as a little gesture on behalf of VOTO and its members during this special time of year.
The VOTO Christmas drinks party was once again held at Drift Meze/Cafe in Ta L-Ibragg, enjoying a great turnout of 51 members and aspirants. A delicious selection of mezes and a lovely buffet were laid out for all to enjoy. As always it was a good opportunity for our members to mingle with each other in a relaxed atmosphere and celebrate together.
This year’s Spiritual meeting was held at The Oratory in Sliema, where Fr. Savio gave us a thought provoking talk about “Who are you and Where do you come from”. A total of 13 members & aspirants attended, the talk was followed by some time of fellowship over some drinks and pastizzi.
This year’s popular Autumn Lunch happened to fall on the first World Day of the Poor, whose main theme is “Let us love, not with words but with deeds” which ties in with VOTO’s mission to help the less fortunate.
The lunch was a complete sell out with a record 220 guests plus 45 children attending. The afternoon began with holy mass celebrated by Fr. Brendan Gatt, after which our guests where hosted to a lavish lunch consisting of appetisers, an entrée of pasta, a delicious spit-roast pork, a selection of roast vegetables and homemade desserts. This event was organised by an extremely hard working sub-committee and the bulk of the food was prepared and served by our volunteers, without who’s help we wouldn’t be able to fund-raise for our much loved special friends. The afternoon wrapped up with a raffle, which was another huge success and largely contributed to the funds generated by this event.
This year’s Gozo Outing was postponed to September due to the elections earlier in June, but thankfully we were blessed with beautiful weather. We had 71 special guests together with their families joining us, who were assisted by 17 volunteers. After an early start we all set off on the 9:00am ferry from Cirkewwa, once in Gozo 2 coaches and 2 wheelchair vans collected the group and took them to Xewkija Church whose patron saint is St. John the Baptist and the religious seat of the Order in Gozo. Mass was celebrated by Mons. Paul Vella, after which pastizzi and cool refreshments where served. Soon after the group headed down towards Marsalforn where they were served a lavish buffet lunch very kindly setup by The Calypso Hotel. Some free time ensued and all enjoyed some time strolling along the promenade. The group made their way back to Mgarr harbour and returned to Malta with the 4:30pm ferry. The cost of this special outing was sponsored by CASUMO Services Ltd, without whose kind contribution would not be able to treat our dear patients to such a lovely day. Special thanks also goes to Chris Galea and the OMVG who assisted us throughout the day and helped in the planning of this year’s trip.