This past week has been an exciting time for the Anchal team. We have received amazing news right and left, and we are happy to report that our Didi Scarves are going fast! First, we want to thank everyone who helped make Anchal’s Night at the Movies Pre-Release Screening of Half the Sky a true success!
Before the event on Sunday afternoon the team was busy buying balloons, making signs, picking up 500+ cookies, and practicing lines. The office was surprisingly calm for most of the day, minus a forgotten password and 20 minutes of pure terror, but all in all we felt ready and confident. Then it came time to set up the space for the evening, nerves were setting in. Colleen and I made our way to the event space, of course picking up just one more iced coffee on the way. More jitters? ‘Eh why not?’
When we arrived at the Ursuline Arts Center, over 30 volunteers consisting of friends, family, students and new supporters were already taking care of every detail. 15 Sacred Heart Academy students volunteered to model scarves for the silent auction and help get things rolling. It was wonderful to have these young activists assist with the evenings events, their energy and excitement was contagious. As I stood watching from the balcony above, it was as if I was watching a choreographed dance. Everyone knew their place, whether it was the bartender, ticket salesmen/saleswomen, or just a good old schmoozer, everyone seemed ready. At this point I slipped away to tech world and readied the video. After getting the volume just right, I went back into the reception space. I was shocked! If the attendance had topped at that moment I would have been happy, but it didn’t. Within 30 minutes, over 250 people were sipping wine, and enjoying cookies, candy and popcorn.
The next hour flew by, knowing many of the faces I bounced from one group to the next quickly forgetting my job to document the evening with photographs. Thankfully our wonderful intern Rachael took these priceless photos. It was crazy! At times I could barely squeeze past people to check out the silent auction or to sneak over to the cookie table. Everyone was enjoying themselves, all excited to support Anchal and more importantly get a preview of the Half the Sky documentary. The social hour came and went, it was time for the show.
The event began with Elizabeth Woolsey, our wonderful emcee, giving a brief history of Anchal and introducing Colleen for a quick update on our project. 30 minutes later, the screening had begun. I abandoned my post as the ‘pusher of play’ and snuck down and around backstage. I turned the corner and saw Colleen. Within seconds we were giggling and jumping around. We were so excited with the incredible turn out and so very thankful for all the help we had received. We both agreed the event couldn’t have been going any better. After updating each other on random tidbits, we parted ways and returned to our posts.
The evening wound down once the film had ended, and all the silent auction pieces had found new homes. It felt amazing to share our passion with those who were unaware on the women’s right issue addressed in the film. More importantly we hoped that the film opened eyes and inspired hearts. So to say THANK YOU just doesn’t seem to cover it, but THANK YOU to everyone who volunteered their time, who bought tickets and came to the show. Special thanks to those that sponsored the event and who donated the party beverages and snacks. It was a fantastic evening!
Now that you’ve seen the film, spread the word! Tell anyone who will listen about the struggles women face today and tell them how they can make a difference by supporting Anchal and organizations like us. That’s all it takes, educate those around you and share your passion for changing lives.
If you missed the Half the Sky documentary this past Monday and Tuesday, visit their site for future screenings and learn how you can purchase the DVD!
For more photographs check out NFocus