Honourable Leader of the Opposition,
Members of Parliament,
Huwa pjaċir tiegħi u ta’ Miriam, li ntukom merħba fil-Palazz Verdala. Nibda l-ewwel nett billi nirringrazzjakom talli ingħaqadtu magħna. Nilqagħkom għall-ħames Ballu tal-Qamar ta’ Awwissu tul din il-Presidenza.
Thank you all for graciously joining us at this annual event. The August Moon Ball has over the years become a much-awaited occasion by many, a fixture in Malta’s calendar of events.
Every year we meet here in this historic setting, all elegantly dressed up with a noble aim in mind. That of supporting the onerous work that the Malta Community Chest Fund carries out on a daily basis to support the those amongst us that fall on difficult times, mostly because of sickness.
I take this occasion to thank and praise the officials and staff of Malta Community Chest Fund who work tirelessly to provide the best service and care to all patients and beneficiaries that ask for our help.
Miriam and I want to thank you for being the backbone of the Foundation. We appreciate how, very often, you go out of your way to ensure that everyone is served in the most humane and adequate manner. We are also aware, that very often, this is done outside of so called ‘office hours’. We commend your dedication and commitment to the aims and objectives of the Malta community Chest Fund.
Upon assuming the role of Head of State in April 2019, I was determined to keep upholding annual traditions that were held in aid of Malta Community Chest Fund. The Ball of the August Moon was one of them.
As we all vividly recall, the years 2020 and 2021 will be remembered as the years of the pandemic, of fear of contracting the virus, social distancing and at times isolation. The words ‘lockdown’, ‘swabbing’, ‘containment’, ‘community spread’ and so on will remain synonymous with this generation that lived through it.
As some of you remember, the August Moon Ball still took place even during those difficult times, albeit under strict conditions and controls. It was not easy to organise. Numerous precautionary measures had to take place which required an exceptional organisational effort. Thankfully, this is all behind us now and today we can truly make the best of each other’s company and dance the night away – no more need of social distancing!
On this note, Miriam and I, on behalf of the Presidency want to personally thank the August Moon Ball Chairperson, Marchesino Daniel de Petri Testaferrata for his sterling work over the past five years, as well as with other previous editions of the Ball. Marchesino, I thank you for your leadership, support and selfless advice and guidance during my tenure.
The same feeling extends to all the members of the organising committee who year in year out dedicate so much of their time and effort for this cause.
We would not be here in this idyllic setting, had it not been for your dedication and your meticulous attention to detail.
My final words of thanks go to the list of partners and entities who always support us to hold the August Moon Ball as well as the Band of the Armed Forces of Malta, the singers and musicians who this year again will be entertaining us with their musical selection and singing.
Without further ado, I once again welcome you to the 2023 August Moon Ball, and I invite you to enjoy the evening.