Founder of Sugarplum Children and her 9 year old daughter who lives with type 1 both speak from the heart at the Sugarplum Dinner.
The Fourth Sugarplum Dinner was held on 14th November, World Diabetes Day, at London’s iconic Victoria & Albert Museum, and raised a staggering £1.5m for the international type 1 diabetes research charity JDRF. JDRF.
This year’s event played host to 350 supporters of Sugarplum Children – the charity set up by Jubie Wigan 2013 after her daughter Aliena was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at just two years old.
Big names supporting the night with their attendance included :Mark Ronson, Florence Welch, Downton Abbey creator, Lord Julian Fellowes and wife Emma, and Jonny Labey, who starred in X Factor Celebrity and who lives with type 1 diabetes.
Jubie paid tribute to all the children who have to take on the massive responsibility of life with type 1 diabetes, but who don’t let the daily challenges stop them. She told guests: “I believe that a time will come when type 1 diabetes is a distant memory for Aliena and the thousands of other children who manage this challenging condition on a daily basis. With even just a little belief, anything can happen.”
Nine year old Aliena captivated the room whilst giving her own speech about life with type one, for which she received a standing ovation .
Caius Pawson, founder of the Young Turks record label which he launched a couple of years after himself being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, spoke about his passion for the theme of the Sugarplum Dinner – ‘If you believe, anything is possible’ –saying: “This message completely resonates with me. I’ve always lived by the idea that if you can see it, you can make it.
“Being able to see other people with type 1 diabetes not just survive, but thrive, has really helped me to make a better reality of my life with diabetes.”
Guests were treated to a dinner cooked by not one, but two Michelin chefs, Jason Atherton and Tom Kerridge, as well as a mesmerising acoustic performance by Florence Welch, and after party DJ set by none other than Mark Ronson.
The night also saw a live auction conducted by Lord Harry Dalmeny, Chairman of Sotheby’s which included the following one-off prizes: Bespoke Huntsman dinner jacket with inner lining designed by artist Sir Michael Craig-Martin; The Venetian Dream – a trip on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express including a stay at the Belmond Hotel Cipriani and private tours with Lanza Bauccina and Save Venice; Chris Floyd photograph ‘Night must fall, Los Angeles’ and Downton Abbey Comes To Dorset – a stay with Downton Abbey creator Lord Fellowes, and Lady Fellowes.
The Sugarplum Dinner live auction has become synonymous with money-can’t-buy lots and this was no exception. The final lot was a once-in-a-lifetime six-Michelin Star dining experience with chefs Jason Atherton and Tom Kerridge, a performance by singer/song-writer Jack Savoretti and actors James Norton and Jeremy Irvine as your butlers on the night (both of whom support JDRF and live with type 1 diabetes), and which sold for £100,000.
In September 2018, Jason and Irha Atherton’s daughter Keziah was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, after being rushed to hospital. Jason told JDRF: “The awareness and the fundraising that the Sugarplum Dinner brings means the world to us. Keziah is now able to lead the life of an average teenager – but with the addition of insulin injections every day. Irha and I are really passionate about educating people on the warning signs of type 1 diabetes as every minute really does count. ”
While James Norton, actor, JDRF supporter and Sugarplum Dinner committee member – who was unable to attend due to last-minute filming commitments – summed up the importance of World Diabetes Day, saying: “I love how so many people are celebrating the bravery of those living with type 1 diabetes and the crucial support they receive from their family or friends in order to make sure that type 1 diabetes doesn’t hold anyone back.”
The fifth Sugarplum Dinner will take place in November 2021.
All images copyright Fear Photography.
Aliena and I are beyond excited to give you the details for the first ever Sugarplum Sponsored Dog Walk which will be taking place at 11am on Sunday 17th March, at Cornbury Park in Oxfordshire. The walk was entirely Aliena’s idea as she wanted to do her own fundraising initiative that all her friends could help with, so to see it become a reality is very special.
We are extremely proud and excited to announce that the final Sugarplum Dinner, held on 14th November 2017 (World Diabetes Day) raised a staggering £750,000 for JDRF, taking the total raised by Sugarplum Children to £1.6m, which really will change the lives of all those brave little stars who live with this condition.
The dinner was a star-studded affair at London’s iconic V&A Museum, attended by 400 guests, including the Prime Minister, actors James Norton & Jeremy Irvine, all of whom live with the condition, as well as Jamie Dornan, Rafe Spall, Jack Savoretti and a who’s who of London’s poet players.
James Norton welcomed everyone to the breathtaking Raphael Galleries, before founder of Sugarplum Children, Jubie Wigan, spoke about her family’s battles with the illness, finishing with an Ode to Type 1, after which there was not a dry eye in the room. The silent auction took place whilst guests enjoyed a delicious dinner cooked by Last Supper, and then followed the live auction with Chairman of Sotheby’s, Lord Harry Dalmeny. The sought after lots included dinner with James Norton, a private concert with singer Jack Savoretti, and a week staying in the most luxurious house on exclusive island of Mustique.
This video was played during the dinner and features 3 separate families who live with type 1.
Actor James Norton welcomes guests to the Sugarplum Dinner before Jubie Wigan, founder of Sugarplum children, takes to the stage to deliver her extremely moving speech, and Ode to Type 1.
A host of celebrities including Lord Julian Fellowes, Matt Barber, Masterchef’s John Torode and TV presenter Lisa Faulkner helped raise £620,000 at the second Sugarplum Dinner raising funds for JDRF. Other well known guests who were in attendance included Downton Abbey creator Lord Julian Fellowes, actors Tom Ward and Matt Barber, the Rt Hon Theresa May MP and Arun Nayar.
They were entertained by performers from Gifford’s Circus and DJ Sam Young provided the music. There was also a live auction, which racehorse trainer Charlie Brooks
Ms May, who has diabetes herself, said: “I know from personal experience of the challenges that come with a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. But these challenges are all the greater when type 1 diabetes affects a young child.
“Parents need the right kind of advice and support to help them navigate through the difficulties and ensure that their child can thrive. That’s why the work of Sugarplum Children is so important – supporting children and families and fundraising for JDRF’s efforts to treat, prevent and ultimately cure type 1 diabetes.”
Lord Julian Fellowes said: “It is a pleasure to support Jubie Wigan and the wonderful work she is doing with Sugarplum Children. Seeing her young daughter Aliena cope so gallantly with this cruel disease makes my resolve even stronger to do whatever I can to help and of course so many people feel the same.”
Last year Lord Fellowes donated the naming of a character in Downton Abbey, who turned out to be Rose’s future husband Atticus Aldridge. This year he offered a signed leather bound copy of the very first script of Downton Abbey, which went for a staggering £34,000.
Other prizes available at the auction included the opportunity to ride the Goodwood racecourse in front of the crowds alongside Gold Cup winning amateur jockey, Sam Waley-Cohen and a day behind-the-scenes with photographer Mario Testino. A dinner party cooked by John Torode went for £40,000, and as there was such a fight between the two highest bidders, John very generously agreed to offer a second dinner, raising an impressive £80,000 in total.
Matt Barber said: “I was truly honoured to be asked to participate in this fabulous evening especially since my character in Downton Abbey, Atticus Aldridge was born at the last Sugarplum Dinner! Hearing Jubie speak about life for her young daughter Aliena, who suffers with type 1 diabetes, is humbling, and I’m delighted to be able to support the charity in finding a cure for this awful disease.”
Jubie said: “To see so many friends and family together supporting children like my own daughter Aliena with type 1 diabetes is just so overwhelming.
“Their support will enable JDRF to continue to try and find a cure for this relentless disease. My target tonight is half a million pounds. I also hope tonight will help to remind people about the seriousness of this disease. With Sugarplum Children I set out to be the voice for those who are too little to shout about it themselves, and this dinner has most certainly provided a platform from which to do this.”
JDRF funds research to cure, treat and prevent type 1. The organisation works with the government, academia and industry to accelerate research in the UK and within healthcare policy to ensure that the outcomes of research are delivered to people with type 1 in the UK.
Karen Addington, chief executive of JDRF in the UK and the nation’s charity leader of the year 2015, said: “The Sugarplum Dinner was an utter triumph. A phenomenal amount has been raised by the event to support JDRF’s work to cure, treat and prevent type 1 diabetes.
“Furthermore, the presence of A-list celebrities backing the cause means awareness of type 1 diabetes is reaching new heights.
“JDRF is deeply thankful for all who were involved with the evening – especially Sugarplum Children founder Jubie Wigan and her incredible family”.
The Sugarplum Candle – On-Sale from 1st October
We are hugely excited to announce the launch of The Sugarplum Candle, in collaboration with Wick & Tallow, whose candles were born out of a love for good design, great fragrances and a deep respect for heritage and character. The partnership was given the go ahead by my daughter, Aliena, herself when she saw that Wick & Tallow’s logo is a unicorn, her favourite animal in the entire world (fantasy or otherwise). Once we saw Wick & Tallow’s logo we just knew this was the company that was meant to make the Sugarplum Candle – if Aliena believes in unicorns then we should all believe there can be a cure for this unrelenting condition.
And we hope you will be as excited by the partnership as we all are! The scent, which includes sweet and gentle notes of white fig and vanilla, not only will evoke thoughts of deliciously sumptuous sugarplums, but it will bring the light of hope, something those of us affected by type 1 cannot live without.
The Sugarplum Candle will be available from 1st October at www.wickandtallow.com, as well as at the Nina Campbell shop on Walton Street, and Soho Home, the lifestyle shop at the recently opened Soho Farmhouse in Greta Tew. The candle is £40 and for every one sold, £10 will go directly to JDRF.
Apologies for my silence over the past few months, but with christmas, and birthdays, it has just been non-stop, but I will now try to do regular updates – 2015 is a big year for Sugarplum!!
We were so proud to have raised over £6000 for JDRF for World Diabetes Day, dressed as Unicorns!! Thank you so much to all who donated, but in particular, to Aliena’s school – Great Tew Primary, and the village pub – The Falkland Arms in Great Tew – we were so touched and overwhelmed by your support.
World Diabetes Day is marked each year on 14th November by huge numbers of people around the globe. For World Diabetes Day 2014, Sugarplum Children is working alongside JDRF to make their #TypeOnesie campaign even bigger than before, so we are encouraging as many schools as possible all over the UK to take part, by donating money to wear a onesie to school.
Last year’s World Diabetes Day was a triumph for all of us who are affected by type 1 diabetes, raising £53,000 to support diabetes research. This year, we hope not only to raise eyebrows, smiles, and even more money, but most importantly, to raise awareness of life with the condition.
Whether you can donate £1, £5, £10, or £100 it will all go towards helping to find the cure for this horrible illness, and change the lives of all whom it affects, but in particular, the 29,000 children living in Britain: our brave little stars.
And for that, we will be eternally grateful.
For more information please email Jubie Wigan: firstname.lastname@example.org
Payment/Social Media Please collect all money raised, and then make one payment to the Sugarplum Children #TypeOnesie Just Giving page: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarplum-children
And if you are able to promote awareness via soclai media, please use the following hashtags: #typeonesie #sugarplumchildren #bravelittlestars #type1diabetes
We were so thrilled to have hosted the first ever Sugarplum Children’s Picnic in Oxfordshire at the weekend – with around 40 children attending, half of whom had T1. Sharky & George kept them all entertained for 3 very hot hours, playing games including Tug of War, catapulting water bombs and lots of jumping on and under their multicoloured parachute – pictures below.
For tea they all sat on straw bales eating sandwiches, sugar free jelly, corn crisps, sausages and cup cakes (even children T1 are allowed a sweet cupcake once in a while!), whilst the grown ups all got to know each other and compared stories about living with a child (or in some cases, two children) with diabetes. Most amazing of all, was seeing the children compare pumps and do blood tests – something which would bring a tear to the eye of even the strongest oaf parents.
We look forward to welcoming many many more children and parents to the next picnic in 2015.