Over £5,000 raised for the Fiji Disaster Appeal

 

We were overwhelmed by the generosity shown at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday and are delighted to confirm that Wasps' players, staff and fans combined to raise £5,060.25 for the Fiji Disaster Appeal.

 

An incredible effort in only two and a half hours of fundraising and we hope your kind donations will help many Fijians who are trying to re-build their lives following the devastating impact of Cyclone Winston.

A variety of players from Wasps’ non match day squad helped with the fundraising efforts pre match, while the match day squad pitched in straight after the final whistle and students from Coventry and Warwick University also supported the club in bucket collections. 

On behalf of the players and staff at Wasps, thank you to everyone who got behind an appeal which is close to a number of our players' hearts, having family or friends affected in Fiji.

If would still like to contribute, you can bid for Wasps no 8 Nathan Hughes' boots in an online auction here

VIDEO: Sailosi Tagicakibau fundraising in the Club House with Ruaridh Jackson and talking about the effect of the cyclone on his family in Fiji:

Cyclone Winston

To date, it has been confirmed that 44 people have lost their lives in the tragedy, while tens of thousands of Fijians have lost their homes and are now in emergency shelters.

A number of Wasps’ players have family and friends back home in the Pacific Islands who have been affected by Cyclone Winston. As a mark of respect and to try to play a small part in helping many people get their lives back on track, our players asked to hold a collection to raise money for the Fiji Disaster Appeal.

 

This appeal is particularly close to the heart of Wasps’ winger Sailosi Tagicakibau, whose family suffered severe damage to their property, while his uncle is a Pastor in Fiji.

Wasps' no 8 Nathan Hughes was born and raised in Fiji and his uncle also lost much of his house during the events of last weekend. Fortunately, his family were sheltering in another part of the building when a tree crashed through the kitchen.

 

Hughes knows it could have been much worse as many Fijians are now trying to come to terms with losing family members or friends in the disaster.

Ashley Johnson and Alex Rieder go round collecting for the appeal after the game.

Nathan said: “When I heard the cyclone was about to hit on Friday night, I was obviously very worried as my brother, sister and close family would all be affected by it. All I wanted was to find out that my family and friends were safe.

 

“I consider myself and my family very fortunate as thankfully they weren’t hurt. Some people were not as lucky and my heart and prayers go out those people who have been most severely affected. 

 

“I know how scary cyclones can be, but my brother said this one was nothing like the cyclones we have ever experienced. Cyclone Winston is one of the strongest storms ever to hit the southern hemisphere, so the damage caused has been devastating for so many people.

 

“Speaking to my family and friends on Friday night, they were just trying to tie the house down and stock up on food before the winds picked up.  It’s hard to put into words how frightening a cyclone can be.  We’re pretty lucky here in the UK weather wise so it’s hard to imagine the sheer strength of wind.

 

“My cousin described seeing a full water tank flying from the next door neighbours flying past the window and into his garden. Then the wind changed direction and it was picked up and thrown back where it came from. Thankfully there was no one outside to get hit.

 

“Entire schools have been destroyed, so kids have had to find other schools to go to. Where my uncle lives, it’s likely to take around two months before electricity is back up and running because all power lines are down on the roads.” 

Sailosi Tagicakibau and Ruaridh Jackson collect for the appeal before the game

As Nathan explains, even small donations can go a long way: “Every British pound donated would be the equivalent to $3 Fijian dollars which could buy a decent amount of vegetables, fruits or basics for a family. So I would encourage people to even donate a small amount if they can, as it will go such a long way to helping people get through the difficult few months ahead, whether that’s providing food or buying candles while the power is out. 

“From people back home in Fiji and from the Fijian community around the world, I would just like to thank everyone for keeping Fiji in your thoughts and prayers. We appreciate everyone’s kindness and generosity and we thank you for supporting this collection.”

 

If you couldn't be at the game, but would still like to donate, please read more information here:

 

 

http://www.fiji.gov.fj/Media-Center/Press-Releases/FIJIAN-GOVERNMENT-ESTABLISHES-DISASTER-RELIEF-FUND.aspx

 

Further information here:

 

http://www.publicfinanceinternational.org/news/2016/02/fiji-appeals-funds-after-destruction-caused-cyclone

 

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cyclone-fiji-idUSKCN0VT002 


Tom Bristow fundraising