In celebration of their 65th year of advocating for and responding to the needs of older people – The Association for The Aged (TAFTA) hosted a Spectacular Sapphire Soirée at the Durban Jewish Club on Friday, 27 October.
The ambiance of the evening was cinematic; treating patrons to an evening of elegance with a programme of dinner catered by Chilli Chocolate Chefs, comedy and fashion – featuring Tafta elders themselves!
Show model and Tafta resident – Penny Nobin Naidoo – shared her experience of the event, saying; “I live in one of the many Tafta retirement apartments (life rights which can be bought from the age of 55). I saw a notice of this event collaborating with Jane Linley-Thomas and decided that I will go listen to what it’s about. The first consultation was a meet and greet with Jane, laying out the plans for the event. Thereafter, auditions were held where over 30 elder contestants presented their unique story, with me being the youngest of all to audition. 12 finalists were selected for the interview and photoshoot stage with professional hair styling, make up, nails and dress up with the beautiful, bright and gorgeous ReJoyce Collection. Each of us had to choose a song that resonates with us and I chose “Unstoppable” by Siya. Rehearsals were so much fun with people choosing to dance and some choosing to sing. The management and staff were amazing. Working with Jane Linley-Thomas and her team was an absolute blast, their love and patience was outstanding. Our glamorous sneakers were donated by Kingsmead Shoes and each contestant got to keep their pair as a memento of the spectacular experience.”
Guests were greeted with welcome drinks and a 360 Spin PhotoBooth to capture their spectacular outfits, followed by a formal welcome from Tafta’s Council Chairperson, Mr Wicus Jacobs who opened the event. Femada Shamam, Chief Executive Officer of Tafta, shared a message of gratitude for the 65 years of support received for the organisation. Shamam asked patrons to use the Conversation Cards gifted at each seat to hold space for older persons through the exchange of stories across generations and in doing so encouraged the celebration of themes of the evening of Participation, Dignity and Joy!
During the exhibitive runway display; each elder model stole the show with their expressive outfit and interaction with the crowd. Canapés were served throughout the show, followed by a hilarious stint of comedy to tease the appetite before a buffet dinner and desserts were served. The evening ended with a ceremonial cutting of the cake sponsored by Reddy’s Bakery, where Tafta Executives were joined by family members of John and Anna Conradie, Tafta’s Founding Members.
“It was an honour to be joined by the Conradie family, staff and supportive care partners of Tafta in a most memorable evening honouring Tafta’s 65 years of service. An event of this nature cannot go off smoothly without the input from many people and I have to commend the efforts of all staff, sponsors and service providers who spun their special magic to achieve success. We are grateful to have worked with industry giants such as Black Coffee Designs, Bash with Tash and Jane Linley-Thomas, as well as talented providers such as Keegan’s Sound and Lighting, TFD Décor and Proactive Concepts. Thank you for partnering with us to further our goals of assisting older people to flourish,” said Shamam.
To view more highlights from the Spectacular Sapphire Soirée and other Tafta activities, follow their social pages on Facebook and Instagram or visit their website at www.tafta.org.za
Source: TAFTA, The Association for the Aged