South Wales Echo, 7th January 2010
This trio of businesswomen are proving three heads are better than one when it comes to fundraising.

Alison Hazledine, Melanie Hamer and Rebecca Collins, founders of the South Wales Ladies Business club, are throwing a big top charity ball to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust.

The three set up the club three years ago to give businesswomen the opportunity to network with like-minded ladies and it now has more than 600 members.

Having raised £6,800 at the annual ball last year, which had a black and white theme, they are hoping to top that at the event on January 29 at the Mercure Holland House Hotel and Spa, Cardiff.

And despite the recession, the trio have already managed to sell more than 250 tickets.

Divorce lawyer Melanie, 44, said “We always hold it at the beginning of the year because we think it’s something for people to look forward to after Christmas. January is often a gloomy, depressing month.

“We chose the circus theme because a number of us went to see Take That in the Millennium Stadium last year and it worked for them so we thought, ‘Why can’t it work for us too?’

“We’ve got circus performers and a great band called Bogart, who are certain to get everyone on the dance floor. We also have some fantastic auction and raffle prizes on offer, including signed goods from Bryn Terfel, a signed CD from the Stereophonics, a signed Cardiff City shirt and a signed rugby ball from the Blues.”

The partner at Cardiff-based Wendy Hopkins Family Law Practice added: “at this stage we’ve sold more tickets than in previous years so it looks set to be our best annual ball yet.”

Ms Collins, 34, of Handelsbanken bank, said: “The reason we’re choosing to support Teenage Cancer Trust is because I used to work with someone whose 16 year-old brother died of cancer about 18 months ago.

“The teenage cancer unit at University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, was in the process of being built at the time but unfortunately he died before he could take advantage of it.”