Yep, you read that right. Since the very first Allstars tournament in Sheffield in 2008, our incredible Allstars fundraisers have generated a staggering £502,032 for our wonderful Charity organisations.
This achievement is something we never expected to reach when we started in with 2008, generating over £3,000. Last year in Cardiff '17 we smashed all our records with an amazing £136,000 total.
This incredible amount has helped countless people in all walks of life who have a great many different needs. This is all possible due to the tireless efforts of hundreds of players, dozens of volunteers, many generous and supportive sponsors, and everyone who donated to the Charities.
We've gone from two teams cajoling their friends and families for sponsorship to family fun days, sponsored walks and bike rides, madcap rallies in Toyotas and rickshaws across India and the Alps, to the Pro Allstars game, to selling thousands of Scottish sugary delicacies, to supporting individual causes for those in need, to backing the Ice Hockey Players' benevolent fund and former players stricken with terrible life changing conditions.
Uk Charity Allstars Chairman Paul Sullivan said:
'We on the organising Committee are simply awestruck by this news. It's a day none of us ever could have predicted and one that makes us thankful, grateful and more than just a little proud of everyone involved over the years.
The Allstars has really found a place in the sport of Hockey, but we have seen it grow and evolve into something that means a great deal to a huge number of people. The work that has been able to be carried out due to the efforts of all the Allstars is something that has changed lives for the better, and if we can do that for just one person, we've done well. The Allstars have made it possible to help hundreds, thousands of people. It's staggering.
From one phone call in 2007 when David picked up the call from Hubbs, we have travelled what seems like lightyears with you all, and made lifelong friends. The efforts we see each year empower all of us to try and drive the Allstars to ever greater heights, always ensuring we keep our basic principles the same;
We celebrate someone who has worked hard to raise funds no matter their end figure. The effort is the key factor.
Also, we will ALWAYS be a mixed ability event. We have folks who learn to skate to become an Allstar and we have an Allstar (Steve Moria) whose jersey number hangs from the rafters of Ice Arena Wales in honour of his achievements. This will always be the case.
On behalf of the Committee (the founders Gareth Hubback and David Grant), Secretary Geraint Walters, all those who have served on the Committee each and every year prior, and myself: Our deepest thanks to you all.'
The event has grown massively in the past few years. To show just how much, here's a little stat for you - by the end of Allstars 2014, we had raised a very respectable £121,000 since 2008. Adding in the fantastic £52k plus already raised for Sheffield '18, the next 3.5 years have totalled a mammoth £381,000 - and we are by no means done this year.
We can't wait to share more about our teams' upcoming events for Sheffield 18, and to see you all in Ice Sheffield on the 28th and 29th July.
Thank you, everyone!