SALISBURY, Md.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--To raise funds for an auction to benefit landmine clearance in Ukraine, Mitzi Perdue was hoping that her offer of a home cooked meal for eight would raise $1000. Instead, and to her amazement, the bidding ended at $220,000.
All the money will benefit the HALO Trust, the leading non-profit organization clearing mines in war-torn areas.
The November 8 event may set a record for the highest amount ever raised, per capita, for a charity meal in a private home. Ms. Perdue's commitment is to use every dollar that was raised to reduce the carnage landmines are causing in Ukraine.
Every part of the evening will be created with donations from food, beverage, and flower companies that want to support Ukraine. Ms. Perdue’s apartment will be transformed with special drapery and new, stage-worthy lighting. In addition:
- Flowers worth thousands of dollars are being donated by Edgar Martinez, owner of Flowers By Edgar of Santa Clara, Calif., and arranged by Samuel Ayala, whose skills have been hailed by People Magazine.
- Guests will be served with donated caviar, truffles, blinis, vodka and champagne.
The meal is being planned under the supervision of Chef Tanika von Rathonyi, nicknamed “the Beauty Food Queen.” She is donating her time and using her contacts to have every part of the evening donated.
As Chef Tanika says, “I’m planning an evening where every morsel, every flavor is a memory.” Chef Tanika will be accompanied by her right-hand man in life and business, Chef Paul Rohadfox from the Santa Clara Hyatt.
The centerpiece of the evening, “Perdue a la Vertical,” is a dish from Ms. Perdue’s cookbook The Perdue Chicken Cookbook. The Queen Mother was served this recipe at the Connaught Hotel in London, and regularly requested it for years afterwards.
Among the dessert choices will be a “statement cake” from Anna A. Umar, owner of Anna Suliana Cakes, one of the most famous bakeries in the country. The servers will be hospitality students from local colleges and universities, who are getting experience in the field they are studying and helping to build their resumés, all while supporting the Ukrainian cause.
The November 8 fundraiser is the latest example of Ms. Perdue's support for Ukraine. She has traveled there three times since Russia's brutal invasion, and her articles, with the interviews sometimes conducted in bomb shelters during active attacks, have appeared in 42 national publications. She’s also donated money for landmine clearance, a women's shelter in Lviv and the purchase of five speedboats for the Kiev police to patrol the Dnieper River after their own boats were turned over to the military. Her crowd-funding effort, DonorSee.com/Ukraine, focuses on the HALO Trust and mine clearance.
For more background on her commitment, do a search on "Mitzi Perdue emerald" to learn about her auctioning her Atocha emerald engagement ring to raise $1.2 million for Ukraine. You'll find 28,000 hits, including a story in The New York Times.
Please contact us if you are interested in interviewing Ms. Perdue and covering her record-setting fundraiser. She can also talk about her on-the ground experience in an active landmine field, or interviewing war crime victims, or talking with students during an active air raid about what it’s like studying in a time of war.