From left: António Bernardes, President of Alliance Française in Algarve, Helena Louro, President of Rotary Club of Faro, João Lazaro, President of APAV, and Christine Fay, Past President Rotary Club Estoi Palace International

Gala dinner in Faro against domestic violence

Rotary Club Estoi Palace International (RCEPI), with the help of the Rotary Club of Faro, held a gala dinner last Friday at Hotel Eva in Faro in support of APAV (Associação Portuguesa de Apoio à Vitima), an association that helps victims of domestic violence.

The evening raised in excess of €5,000, which will help APAV provide multiple specialist support services to victims of domestic violence.

APAV was founded 31 years ago providing protection and support to those affected by this scourge ( The association has two shelters offering both emergency and prolonged support to help those affected develop a new life plan, free of violence.

Violence against women and domestic violence are no longer hidden away. They are much more in the public domain, particularly since lockdown. Domestic violence is, and remains, a severe social problem, with serious consequences for victims, and it has a devastating emotional and economic impact on the whole family.

Data shows that 62 million European women suffered some form of physical and/or sexual violence from the age of 15.

The gala dinner saw 110 guests gather at Hotel Eva to give their support to this fundraiser. The President of APAV, João Lázaro, gave a presentation about the work the association does to help victims and how much it is needed. He was accompanied by Júlia Cardoso, responsible for the Algarve branch located in Loulé.

Following a buffet dinner, the string quartet Sul’Arte gave a recital of both classical and contemporary music from Mozart, Schubert and Joplin, which was “outstanding. We are very grateful to the extremely talented musicians, José Miguel Gomes, Helena Duarte, both on violin, Ivetta Natzkaya, on viola, and Mikhail Shumov on cello, for aiding this worthwhile cause,” said a spokesperson for RCEPI. Ivetta and Mikhail are both members of the renowned Orquestra Clássica do Sul.

RCEPI and APAV are also grateful for the support of the Algarve branch of Alliance Française, whose main mission is to disseminate the French language and culture. Thanks also went to PA International Foundation for sponsoring the event.

Raffle and auction prizes were donated by Côté Particuliers, Quinta do Francês, Quinta dos Vales, About Wine, Tribulum Restaurant, Mestre Raposa, Shirley Dunne Villa Management, and Brian Rodgers Football School.

For further information on RC Estoi Palace International, click here and if you wish you can still donate to this excellent cause.