The 2022 Kirklees and Calderdale Charity Lunch (KACCL) has raised £24,560 for local charities, supported by performances from a Ukrainian/British children’s group and Halifax’s Orange Box Choir.

The annual KACCL event sees nearly 300 businesspeople from across the region coming together at Cedar Court Hotel, Ainley Top and has raised over £100,000 for charities since its inception in 2016. After a three-year break due to the pandemic, the event has made a successful comeback with a sizable donation towards local community work.

The charities benefitting from the £25,000 raised this year are Calderdale SmartMove, which supports homeless and vulnerable individuals and families across Calderdale, and the Lawrence Batley Theatre, an arts venue in the heart of Huddersfield.

The Ukrainian/British children’s group which performed at the event have been provided with a free space to rehearse at the Lawrence Batley Theatre thanks to the theatre’s commitment to young people.

The group performed a dance to the song ‘Stefania’ by Ukrainian Eurovision Song Contest 2022 winners, Kalush Orchestra as well as short songs and dances carrying the message: “Let there be spring, where we stand until the end. We will not be broken by war. Ukraine is alive forever, Ukraine is our land, Ukraine unites hearts.”

The event, which was compered by Pete Emmett, also included a heartfelt performance by the Orange Box Choir, which is part of Square Chapel Arts Centre community outreach programme. The choir was set up from the funds raised by the second KACCL event in 2017 and has performed at KACCL ever since.   

Becky Atkinson, CEO of the Lawrence Batley Theatre, said about the event: “I would like to extend a massive thank you to KACCL for having us as one of the chosen beneficiaries this year. It was such a wonderful, joyful day and the funds raised will go a huge way to supporting our work with children and young people.”

Paula Briggs, community engagement officer at Calderdale SmartMove, added: “The SmartMove team is so grateful to KACCL for hosting the event. It was absolutely amazing to be a part of, and we were quite blown away by the kindness and generosity of people. KACCL is an amazing group of people doing great things for our local charities.

“From a personal level too, it has been a pleasure to work with the team of organisers over the last few months. The funds we receive are vital at the moment to help us support our vulnerable individuals and families through some tough months ahead.  We’re all very grateful to be involved this year, and we hope to see the amazing work supporting local charities to carry on for a long time.”

Steve Crowther, chair of the KACCL Committee and managing director at Crowther Accountants, said: “We were really excited to be able to bring back KACCL after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic and this year’s event was particularly joyous and heartfelt.

“Supporting charities that do tremendous work with the local community is a real motivator for us to hold this event each year. We’re thrilled to support wherever we can and give back into Calderdale and Kirklees area.” The event is made possible by the KACCL organising committee, comprised of businesses from across the region including Cedar Court Hotels, Chadwick Lawrence, Crowther Accountants, Eastwood & Partners, Faith PR, Hellomint, Stafflex, Halifax Town Football Club and Tracy Sheldon.