This weekend wealth management specialist company, Citadel, united with Irish music icon, Ronan Keating, and golfing legend, Gary Player to raise just over R2.2 million for South African children in need. The auction proceeds are managed and distributed by the Citadel Philanthropy Foundation.

For the sixth year running, Citadel, music icon Ronan Keating and golfing legend Gary Player, have joined forces in benefit of the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital Oncology Unit and the Gary and Vivienne Player Foundation’s main project, the Blair Atholl Pre-Primary School.

The 2024 Citadel golf tournament and gala charity auction, featuring both Keating and Player took place at the Blair Atholl Golf and Equestrian Estate, near Lanseria on Saturday, 2 March 2024 and raised just over R2.2 million for the beneficiaries.

“As a proudly South African company, Citadel understands the need for structured and sustainable giving. It is for this reason that the Citadel Philanthropy Foundation, the first donor-advised fund of its kind in South Africa, was founded in 2013. At the core of our philosophy is making an impactful difference in the lives of South Africans, especially children. Since inception, the foundation has received more than R50 million and has paid out almost R46 million towards deserving beneficiaries,” said Citadel Head of Philanthropy, Jean de Villiers, who was also the auctioneer at the gala charity auction.

“It’s heart-warming that the event took place at Blair Atholl for the first time – a place where my late wife, Vivienne, and I spent many years working closely with the local community and where the school we built in 1990 is still a beacon of hope and prosperity for many families in the community,” said Player.

Keating said his partnership with Citadel and Player to raise funds for these philanthropic causes came from a profound connection with the beneficiaries and South Africa as a country. “South Africa has a special place in my heart. I lost my mom to cancer in 1998. Since then, I have been committed to raising funds for cancer awareness, prevention, and treatment and fundraising for the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital Oncology Unit has been an important cause for me over the years.”

Citadel CEO Andrew Möller said the Citadel Philanthropy Foundation had since its inception in 2013 paid out almost R46 million towards deserving beneficiaries – among them the two causes they raised money for again this year, and because of the generous donations from our donors were able to make “profound impacts” in hundreds of children’s lives. “In this war against poverty, we know that the most effective weapon in our arsenal is education. That is why the Citadel Philanthropy Foundation has put such an emphasis on educating our children, be it early childhood development or financial literacy. We can only win this war through empowering our children. However, we also know that winning any war requires collaboration. It requires all South Africans, irrespective of politics, to stand together to make a difference. South Africans are tenacious, resilient, innovative and most of all generous, as we’ve seen today. We thank you immensely for your contribution.”