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19th Burns Night in Vilnius brought together traditions, technology and philanthropy

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February 2, 2018

On Saturday, January 27th, the British Chamber of Commerce in Lithuania held its 19th Burns Night – traditional, charity event to celebrate the birthday of Scotland’s national poet, Robert Burns (1759 – 1796) and to raise funds for the local charities. The largest and most popular event of the chamber was held in Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania and attracted nearly 300 guests.

19th Burns Night also raised a record amount of 10.600 EUR to be shared by fund “Not about me” (Ne apie mane) and Vilnius Social Club – both supporting the children and youth. For the first time, guests were invited to make their donation by a specially developed app. The money raised will fund a purchase of sensors to protect the children with type 1 diabetes from pain across Lithuania and will support further development of programmes for teenagers in Naujininkai suffering from social isolation.

Chris Butler, the chairman of the British Chamber of Commerce in Lithuania and MC of this event expressed his appreciation to all, who are supporting the Chambers’ annual fund-raising initiative:  “The event has become the main vehicle through which the members and guests of the British Chamber raise funds for good charitable causes.  Over the 19 years, we have helped 22 different charities ranging from orphanage homes, cancer charities, addiction centres to help-lines and a number of educational projects.  In total over 90.000 EUR has been raised since the first Burns Night in Vilnius.”

As appropriate, 19th Burns Night in Vilnius was celebrated in a true Scottish manner and had most of the essentials necessary for a successful event. The haggis was ceremonially piped in by Craig Weir, distinguished piper from Scotland, “The Address to a Haggis” was recited by Ross White, the Traditional Scottish Toasts were delivered by Nick Price and Major Jane Witt. This year Guests had an opportunity to be introduced to Gleadhraich excellent Scottish Celtic rock band and the “The Flingstones” ceilidh band  – both making their debut in Lithuania, which was a great success.

After the midnight the Scottish night was continued in at Bar Le Salon, Kempinski Hotel Cathedral Square.

The chamber expresses its enormous gratitude to all 19th Burns Night sponsors, charity raffle and auction sponsors and partners.