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Wayne Rooney at the UNICEF Dinner

The UNICEF Gala Dinner

Manchester United stars last night celebrated ten years of ‘United for UNICEF’ at the annual glittering gala dinner

The UNICEF Gala Dinner

Sir Alex Ferguson, Ryan Giggs, Rio Ferdinand, Wayne Rooney and Dimitar Berbatov were among the Manchester United players, staff and partners to turn out in style for the prestigious United for UNICEF Gala Dinner, which last night raised in excess of £75,000 towards the prevention of HIV.

The money raised will support UNICEF’s HIV prevention campaign ‘Live Free from HIV’ helping to fund lifesaving HIV prevention work that ensures young people have the skills and knowledge needed to protect themselves and their loved ones from HIV.

This year’s event was hosted by Comedian and TV presenter Patrick Kielty and featured a special performance from pop sensations The Saturdays and Manchester’s finest - The Yeah Yous.   The night was topped off by an exclusive Question and Answer session with UNICEF Ambassadors Ryan Giggs, Rio Ferdinand and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who talked about their illustrious football careers as well as their experiences on the recent Asia tour, where several players visited UNICEF projects in Malaysia and China.

United for UNICEF is the longest running collaboration between a Premier League football club and a global charity and last night’s event celebrated the tenth anniversary of the partnership, which to date has raised over £2 million, helping over 1.5 million children worldwide.

Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United Manager and UNICEF Ambassador is proud of what the partnership has achieved and believes the Club’s work with UNICEF is vital to young people’s futures, he said:

“Everyone at Manchester United looks forward to the United for UNICEF Gala Dinner because it’s a chance to celebrate the positive impact the club has made on children’s lives. Last night was extra special as we celebrated 10 years of working with UNICEF, the leading children’s organisation.  As a club we are committed to young people, and our partnership with UNICEF is testament to this. HIV and AIDS is the biggest challenge faced by young people. Tonight, all of the money raised will support UNICEF’s HIV prevention work, and will give youngsters around the world the chance of a future. That is something that as a club we are very proud of.”

Almost every minute of every day, two young people are infected with HIV. Preventing the spread of HIV among young people, by addressing its causes and giving them the skills and knowledge they need, is key to tackling the global epidemic.