Empowered? Ecstatic? Enthused? Definitely. I couldn’t say any less. But I can say a LOT more....
How blessed am I to have worked with such a great crew of volunteers and all of the CWoW staff over the past few months to kick off this amazing event last night?! At first, I wasn’t sure how it was all going to turn out, but after our first meeting with the event volunteers, I was totally on fire! As we all sat and brainstormed, the team had ideas left and right for how this event could play out. Eventually a lot of those ideas came to life at the History Center last night in downtown Fort Wayne, IN.
The runway was set and ready to go early in the day, and all the fashion outfits shortly followed. The silent auction was set up as the food was being displayed. Our Henna artist brought all her goodies for people to do tattoos throughout the night...an art that has its origins in parts of India, Pakistan & Africa. People started showing up, wine was poured, and then BOOM! The first belly dancer took the stage. Graceful, moving, steady. A true celebration of her art, her inner goddess. A celebration of Middle Eastern culture.
TRJE Remix Djembe Drummers kicked off next, with West African beats that made me dance anywhere and everywhere I happened to be in the room. Accompanied by African song, they put on a spectacular presentation that was truly breathtaking.
Then came the models, to the beat of the drums, showcasing global outfits from around the world (Japan, Ghana, Tajikistan, Sierra Leone, and many more), some of which were live auctioned at the end of the night. Oh, the live auction... how much more CHEESE could there have been?! Nicole Moore and Hope Sheehan played that up in style with such tenacious energy! We didn’t have enough crackers for all that cheese!
Many times throughout the night, I stopped and caught myself with the hugest grin spread across my face at everything that was going on. The energy emanating from everyone there was astounding. This really was a celebration of cultures around the globe. It was an awareness of the beauty that exists in other areas of the world - the beauty that we don’t get to experience every day. It is in the celebration and the awareness of women around the world that we are able to stand in solidarity with them, and empower them. I am delighted to say that this was a success! I am also delighted that all of last night’s proceeds will go to benefit the Mwangatu Women in Kenya. It will be put towards the next mission trip there to continue working with them in sustainable business practices, training, and product development.
So I smile. And I say Thank You. Thank you to our fundraiser committee (Paula, Liz, Jordan, Clydia, Caroline). Thank you to the staff that helped put this on (Lorelei, Hope, Nicole, Kayla, Robin, Melissa). Thank you to all of the models and volunteers for the evening. And thank you to everyone who came and participated last night. You are all helping to change the world. You are all helping to empower women around the world, and especially in Kenya by being a part of this particular event.