Publication Date: 2023/03/09

HALIFAX, MARCH 9, 2023 – In support of UNICEF’s work to improve access to safe water and sanitation for children around the world, UNICEF Canada will host its 31st annual Chefs for UNICEF Water for Life Gala at the Halifax Convention Centre on Thursday, April 20 at 6 p.m. The event will offer a delicious menu of international cuisine, prepared by some of Nova Scotia’s top culinary talent, a keynote address, and an online auction.

Participating Chefs include:

  • Adam Bower, Grand Banker Bar & Grill and The Old Fish Factory Restaurant
  • Andy Camm, Harbour City Bar & Grill at Hotel Halifax
  • Malcolm Campbell, Cabot Cape Breton
  • Christopher Chafe, The Westin Nova Scotian
  • Jonathan Hannam, Halifax Convention Centre
  • Christophe Luzeux, Halifax Convention Centre
  • Rob MacIsaac, My Metro Works
  • Jamie Mullett, Sysco Canada
  • Martin Salvador, Beach Pea Kitchen & Bar
  • Geir Simensen, Legendary Hospitality (Stubborn Goat, Antojo, Durty Nelly’s)

This year, the event aims to raise $365,000 as children urgently need support. The COVID-19 pandemic, the ongoing war in Ukraine, and more recently, the earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria have intensified the need to continue UNICEF’s essential work focused on safe water, sanitation, and hygiene.

Despite our understanding of the benefits of safe drinking water and the significant progress we have made, one quarter of the world's population has been left behind. Globally, more than 1,000 children under five die every day from diseases caused by inadequate water, sanitation, and hygiene.

“There is no better time to help children,” said Sean Doucet, Lead Chef for the Gala and Senior Director of Operations at SilverBirch Hotels & Resorts. “This essential event gathers the region’s most talented Chefs to create an outstanding culinary experience while raising money for a very important cause.”

Emceeing the event this year is Global News Halifax anchor Paul Brothers and special guest and keynote speaker is award-winning journalist and TVO TV personality Nam Kiwanuka, who is recognized for her involvement in humanitarian causes. Kiwanuka was born in Uganda and lived in a refugee camp in Kenya before moving to Canada.

The generosity and support of the people of Halifax has made the UNICEF Water for Life Gala one of UNICEF’s most important fundraising events in North America. In addition to the award-winning chefs from across the province donating their time and talent, the event relies on a dedicated team of local volunteers.

“Over the last 30 years, the Halifax community has made a tremendous difference,” said Jeannine Bakeeff, UNICEF Canada Board Member and the Gala’s Chair. “Together, we have raised over $4 million to support UNICEF in its life-saving work ensuring the right to water for every child. Let’s continue to grow and seize this opportunity to give back.”

In addition to a fantastic food and drink experience, more than 130 exceptional auction items, will be up for grabs. Items include jewelry, restaurant experiences, golf packages and many vacation options, all donated by generous individuals and businesses locally in support of UNICEF. 

The online auction kicks off ten days before the Gala, beginning on Tuesday, April 11 at 12 noon AST and closing at the event on Thursday, April 20 at 9:30 p.m. AST. For a full list of auction items and bidding details, visit: Chefs For UNICEF Water for Life Gala.

Tickets for this charitable event are on sale now. Individual tickets are $300 and tables of ten are available for purchase. To order tickets, please call 1-800-819-0889 ext. 8204. A charitable receipt will be issued for a portion of the ticket price.

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UNICEF is the world’s leading humanitarian organization focused on children. We work in the most challenging areas to provide protection, healthcare and immunizations, education, safe water and sanitation and nutrition. As part of the United Nations, our unrivaled reach spans more than 190 countries and territories, ensuring we are on the ground to help the most disadvantaged children. While part of the UN system, UNICEF relies entirely on voluntary donations to finance our life-saving work. Please visit and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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