SHEFFIELD’S great and good gave their support to celebrations to mark the 50th anniversary since the founding of the city’s Amnesty International branch.
A party was held at the Courtyard Cafe, in Attercliffe, opened by the Lord Mayor Sylvia Dunkley who made a speech in support of Amnesty’s work and lit a candle to represent light in the darkness of human rights violations around the world.
There was also an address from dancer Sophie Mei, a former star of TV show Britain’s Got Talent.
Sophie recently won the Human Rights Student Reporter of the Year award at the national Amnesty International UK Media awards for her work on the terrible plight of victims of human trafficking.
Messages of support were read from Bishop of Sheffield, Dr Steven Croft, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, fellow city MPs David Blunkett and Paul Blomfield, Green Party councillor Jillian Creasy, and author Marina Lewycka.
The celebration highlighted Sheffield members’ campaigning work around the world - including an appeal of behalf of Djoly Mpanzu, who fled political persecution in Congo in 2002 and is well known in Sheffield for his humanitarian activities, but is now facing deportation.
Live music was provided by musicians the Anything Goes Ukelele Orchestra and Jackalope Tales.
Graham Jones, of Sheffield Amnesty International, said: “We have much appreciation to all those who helped make this event such a success.”