More young care leavers will have the chance to realise their career dreams following a hugely successful event held in aid of Drive Forward.

Not only was the event a sell-out but it raised the fantastic sum of £4000 AND crucially resulted in companies such as Saatchi and Saatchi, Norton Rose Fullbright, Havas, Krow Communications and DFS offering work placements for our young people. Guests packed The Pregnant Man pub on Charlotte Street where they were entertained by the brilliantly funny comedian Nick Hastings. Our very own Sophie Hytner provided a jazz influenced musical interlude with Porsha Grant, a Diploma student at Wac Arts. They were accompanied by Adam Gray, a former student at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama.

As the evening progressed the audience was introduced to Drive Forward’s Director, Martha Wansbrough and Michael Carter, one of the young care leavers on the Drive Programme. Guests listened intently as Martha explained the unique challenges young people face when they leave the care system and spoke of the difference the charity, in partnership with local employers, can make. These sentiments were echoed by Michael (pictured) who spoke eloquently and passionately about his personal experiences of growing up in care. Having recently completed a placement at Saatchi and Saatchi, Michael was interviewed on stage by his supervisor about how the opportunity had given him the confidence and determination to pursue his chosen career.

After the event, Martha Wansbrough said: “In the short term the money raised will help us to work with more care leavers, but as our guests heard first hand from Michael, the placements we have been offered will have a lasting impact on the young people who are accepted onto them. We are extremely grateful to everyone who came along and supported us. The evening wouldn’t have been possible without the backing of Saatchi and Saatchi, not to mention the support of their Worldwide Deputy Chairman, Richard Hytner.”

You can see more photos from the event here.