NEARLY £9,000 was raised at one of Worcestershire's top hotels for Bromsgrove charity the Rees Foundation, which helps those who have been in foster or residential care.

The Wood Norton at Evesham donated the use of its venue for the black tie dinner, which took place in its events suite The Orangery and attracted a large gathering of the county business community.

Jan Rees, founder of the Rees Foundation, said: “A big thank you to both The Wood Norton and all guests for attending the Rees Foundation’s first gala fundraising dinner. I am overwhelmed with everyone’s generosity and support and cannot believe we have nearly raised an incredible £9,000 to aid our project work in building a network of care experienced professionals. Thanks to the funds raised, we will now be able to offer many more opportunities through signposting, events, training, resource and financial support. Many services aimed at those leaving care can only be accessed up to a certain age, so through Rees Foundation we want to help anyone who has been in care at any stage to thrive and reach their full potential.”

In the charity auction guests competed for top prizes including an overnight stay with dinner at The Wood Norton, return Eurostar tickets to for two to Paris, a hot air balloon flight and a tour of Malvern’s famous Morgan Factory.

Steve Sweeny, general manager of The Wood Norton, added: "The Rees Foundation is an extremely worthy cause, and I am delighted that we have been able to offer our support in hosting a fantastic event that raised such a phenomenal amount of money. I am in no doubt the raised funds will go a long way in supporting the charity’s work and it was great so see so many local businesses showing support in their attendance.”

The Rees Foundation gala fundraising dinner marked the start of the annual Foster Care Fortnight campaign, which aims to raise the profile of fostering, while inspiring potential carers to come on board.