The American Friends of the Phelophepa Train (AFPT) to Host the 2015 Annual Awards Benefit Gala Celebrating 21 Years in Service

“We are thrilled to welcome the supporters of the Phelophepa trains and honor individuals that continue to make a difference in the world.” – Archbishop Desmond Tutu
AFPT to award the “Desmond Tutu Phelophepa Achievement Award for Excellence” and announce details about Phelophepa III

New York, NY – The American Friends of the Phelophepa Train (AFPT) is hosting their annual awards benefit gala on Monday, November 30, 2015. The red carpet event will be held at Guastavino’s in New York with cocktail reception to start at 6 PM. This year’s gala will recognize the work of global leaders for their achievements in health, cultural arts, business, humanities, and philanthropy.

The funds raised at this year’s awards benefit dinner will contribute to establish the third Phelophepa Train, Phelophepa III set to enter service in 2018. This new addition will be used as a surgical facility to continue the vision and legacy of the Phelophepa cause. “We have never been able to offer any surgical services to the patients, which has been a great concern and dire need,” says Cathe Kruger EVP American Friends of the Phelophepa Train (AFPT). She adds, “Imagine the excitement of people living in desolate impoverished communities when a new surgical train arrives to do cataract operations giving thousands of legally blind people a new day of light and sight.” Dedicated to helping their patients with cataract surgeries, the organization has decided to add a car to the two existing Phelophepa Trains starting in 2016 while Phelophepa III is constructed.  

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The Phelophepa trains deliver primary health care, education and outreach programs including, HIV/AIDS education. AFPT services include training community volunteers in basic healthcare and educating local schools and children. The South African Phelophepa trains travel throughout the country on a journey so worthwhile that the rural people refer to it as the “Train of Hope.” Its passengers are doctors, nurses, dentists, pharmacists and counselors who deliver primary health care, empowerment and technology to those in need.

The gala held in New York City’s historical venue, Guastavino’s will include international dignitaries, American film industry (Hollywood) celebrities, and local and national socialites as guests. Artists from the Broadway Musical, “The Lion King” will be providing the main entertainment for the evening followed by a fashion show by designer Sergio Alain Barrios (SAB) who will be featuring a collection of men’s and women’s fashions created from African textiles.

Guests will have the opportunity to participate in an auction which will include exclusive Nelson Mandela Memorabilia. A few mentionable items include, a 1995 World Cup Rugby photo signed by both Nelson Mandela and Francois Pienaar, 18K King Gold Hublot Mandela watches with a bezel set with 35 diamonds (totaling 1.15 carats), and a three piece funeral farewell art collection by Jane Makhubele. The Hublot special edition watches are limited to 95 pieces, a reference to Nelson Mandela’s age at the time of his death. Gala attendees will also have a chance to participate in bidding for an all-inclusive luxury trip to South Africa.

Philip Nobel, a descendent of the legendary Nobel family recently partnered with a champagne house out of France and will be present to do a soft launch of the brand, “House of Nobel” at the awards gala. The Nobel family is also known for the creation of Nobel Prizes along with numerous other philanthropic and innovative ventures.  

Past staunch support for this remarkable project has come from President Nelson Mandela, UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and President Bill Clinton. “We are thrilled to welcome the supporters of the Phelophepa trains and honor individuals that continue to make a difference in the world.” – Archbishop Desmond Tutu


With a vision to bring hope, empowerment and health equity to the poor in the rural communities of South Africa, Phelophepa provides a simple, one-stop service for its patients. Equipped with everything a traveling hospital requires, world’s largest mobile clinic provides healthcare education and outreach programs that ensures continued care once the train has departed. This cause has received awards and won global recognition for using innovative methods and technology in which the trains bring the best of modern medicine to rural areas in South Africa.


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