DEF London: Diamonds in the Sky raises over $1 million

Varda Shine, Nicky Oppenheimer, Peter Sands were honoured with accolades
DEF London: Diamonds in the Sky raises over $1 million

The first fundraising event of the Diamond Empowerment Fund saw a huge support from key personalities of the diamond industry and beneficiaries of the organization. The event was entitled DEF London: Diamonds in the Sky was held in London on November 8, 2010. The funds raised were over $1 million.

Co-chairs Varda Shine (CEO of the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) and Anna Martin (Managing Director, Diamond Jewellery, Standard Chartered) along with Nicky Oppenheimer (Chairman of De Beers), V. Shankar (CEO – Europe, Middle East, Africa and Americas, Standard Chartered), Russell Simmons (Chairman and CEO of Rush Communications and co-founder of the D.E.F), Dr. Benjamin Chavis (Co-President of the D.E.F), the D.E.F’s Africa’s Angels, Nicola Breytenbach-Steiner and Flaviana Matata, and a plethora of VIPs and celebrities attended the event. D.E.F holds the mission to raise awareness and support for the empowerment and education of African youth in nations where diamonds are a natural resource.

Nicky Oppenheimer, the Chairman of De Beers and Peter Sands, Group Chief Executive Standard Chartered, were honoured for their leadership and strong commitment to corporate social responsibility. Students who directly benefited from D.E.F’s programme shared their speeches. Varda Shine was presented a special accolade of 'Humanitarian of the Year 2010', by Russell Simmons.

The event hosted a live auction, MC’d by Tim Dabson of DTC, raised more than $500,000 with spectacular lots including diamond jewellery, travel packages, sports packages. An on-line fundraising auction will continue to coincide with the London event until 30th November on The spotlight of the event focused on the unique chance to create history by ‘opening’ the first DTC Sight of 2011.

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