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There’s nothing sweeter: Five years of Sweet ChariTea

HerCanberra Team

 It’s now been five years since Kartika Medcraft and her team started Sweet ChariTea to give back to Pediatrics at the Canberra Hospital. 

When her son, Sebastian, was diagnosed with a rare spinal cord tumour at age three, Kartika (pictured above, far left) wanted to find a way to give back to the community that gave so much to her and her family throughout that challenging time.

As the owner of Swish Vintage, Kartika saw the glamour that lurked below the pantsuits of Canberran and thought there was surely a way to channel glitz and fun into an event that would ultimately make a difference.

We chatted to Kartika ahead of Sweet ChariTea’s fifth annual event – When You Wish Upon A Star – this Saturday

How is Sweet ChariTea different from other fundraising events? 

This event is unique. As much as it is about fundraising for Paediatrics at The Canberra Hospital (PaTCH), it is also a local small business showcase, showing off the amazing talents of generous home grown performers, artists, photographers, hair stylists, make up artists, fashion designers, florists, models, and of the course the amazing caterers, bakers, cakers and home cooks.

The auction is built around gorgeous hand made items from the local community and market stall holders that generously say yes to me when I beg them for free stuff! Our home town is so full of hidden treasures and beautiful generous businesses, we are absolutely honoured that they support us year after year.

We also have some amazing small businesses from around the country that donate to us, not because it will bring them business, or benefit their kids using PaTCH services, but simply because it’s a great cause and they are great people. The friendships and networking from this event are truly what makes it special. We are really a family. The Sweet Charitea family!

What can guests expect from Sweet ChariTea 2017? 

We have filled The Abbey to maximum capacity this year with 25 styled tables in theme. We are excited to have The Green Shed on board as a partner this year, and the amazing Diamond Boutique crew too.  

There will be a gourmet tea bar with our lovely tea hostesses brewing and serving special blends by High Tea with Harriett. We have some fun social media filters for guests to use and post during the event. There is a fantastic themed Art Exhibition with artworks donated to our auction, each artist has interpreted the theme into their gorgeous piece.

Kartika (center) with Vicky Kidd-Gallichan, Backstage Director/Designer and stylist (left) and Belle Hogg, resident photographer, graphic designer, social media and co-organiser/stylist (right).

Kartika (center) with Vicky Kidd-Gallichan, Backstage Director/Designer and stylist (left) and Belle Hogg, resident photographer, graphic designer, social media and co-organiser/stylist (right).

This year we have our first fundraising calendar being launched, we also have for the first time a very exciting themed doughnut wall & buffet, styled by Cassandra Lee and treats supplied by The Doughnut Department, Mugshots Photo booth are coming along and Mickey and Minnie Mouse might just make an appearance too!

The guests will all receive a promo bag filled to the brim with mountains of gifts, samples, offers and information. And of course, we are famous for the incredible sweet treats that are donated each year. All these wonderful businesses will be promoted via the big screen presentation on the day, and we encourage our guests to go out and support the community that supports the event each year! Shop local, buy handmade and there’s always room for cake…

Can you tell us about the calendar?

This is our first and hopefully will become an annual Sweet ChariTea special project. You will fall in love with the bright colourful images of patients, volunteers and families involved with Sweet ChariTea or PaTCH all costumed in the event theme (you might even find a page of cheeky witches, with big hearts in there, shot by The Den photography).

The rest of the calendar images are gorgeous photography by Belle Photography who has an amazing knack for capturing the true spirit of her muses. This calendar is available to schools and work places as a fundraiser, with $2 from each sale going to the school or workplace and $10 to PaTCH. For more information on how you can take part and raise some funds for your workplace or school whilst supporting local sick kids, email us at [email protected].

How much are tickets? 

Tickets range between $93-99. There are limited tickets left, on sale right up until Saturday night at Eventbrite.

What’s the theme? 

This year’s theme is ‘When you wish upon a star’ inspired by the works of the greatest story teller of all time – Walt Disney. All tables are inspired by a character or movie and interpreted by the stylists –Canberra’s best party people and creatives.

We have tables like ‘Dark Carnival, Mary Poppins, Moana, Bambi, Bippity Boppity Boo, Belle, Neverland, Fantasia – Dance of the sugarplum fairy, A Whole New World, 101 Dalmatian’s, Jessie the Yodelling Cowgirl, Rapunzel, The Hundred Acre Wood and many more! There’s even a huge sparkly Disneyland castle for guests to take their annual selfies in front of!

Will there be entertainment? 

This year we are really proud to be presenting some amazing young talented Canberran’s – Ned & Molly Philpot and Sasha Tyler along with the fabulous Jazida and her dance troupe! We have a very sparkly fashion show from our partner Rockstars & Royalty, with some of the fashion accessories going to auction.

the essentials 

What: Sweet ChariTea 2017: When You Wish Upon A Star
When: Sunday 17 September from 12.45pm-6pm
Where: The Abbey Function Centre, Federation Square, O’Hanlon Place, Nicholls
Tickets: From $93-99. Purchase yours via Eventbrite

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Sometimes a story is bigger than one person…that’s when the HerCanberra Team puts its collective head together to come up with the goods. Enjoy!

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