This evening is a great example of how an impromptu conversation at a local café (Joe’s Kid) can turn into an epic fundraising event. People Tree were touched at how enthusiastic our local community were to get involved in co-organising a night of entertainment to fundraise money for our producer group, KTS in Nepal.
Over 160 people attended the event, which was incredible to see and meant standing room only for those arriving a bit later. We also had a raffle where a lucky man won a bouquet of women’s pants-thanks to Pants to Poverty. The sample sale took over £1000 and showcased knitwear made by KTS-which in our autumnal summer, was fitting! We raised in total an impressive £2,637. Our event was so cool- it was featured in Time Out and Sara Pascoe personally tweeted the day after saying she loved being there! We even had our own after party!!
The Rag Factory- a well-known arts venue, just off Brick Lane kindly donated the space and one of their residents, Rocky, Founder of Craft Theatre, put together the creative line-up. Highlights included: Sara Pascoe (Stand Up for the Week, Mock the Week) with her insightful observational anecdotes about the joys of dating, amongst many other topics. Trodd en Bratt (nominated for Best Comedy in the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2015) entertained us with their energy and hilarious sketches and we also enjoyed more artistic tableaux by Craft Theatre. Huge Davies (who is hugely talented- get it? ) shocked the audience by sharing an unexpected and rather colourful tongue- in -cheek song about Emma Watson and we all relaxed to the soulful sounds of Leo Law.
It was an honour to hear People Tree’s CEO, Safia Minney MBE and Dr Unni Krishan (Head of Disaster Preparedness, Plan International NGO) speak briefly about the challenges that are still being faced by not only KTS, but of course all those affected by the earthquake 3 months on. We spoke to Kiran, from KTS the week before, who filmed a video especially for us to share which showed very clearly the local impact of the earthquake on KTS’ immediate surroundings.
Kiran from KTS shared an update with us:
The earthquake of 7.8 magnitude on the 25 April 2015 was a terrifying experience and shocked everyone one of us. It took us over a week to get back on our feet and slowly get back to our normal routine but then the second earthquake on 12 May shattered our hopes and uncertainty loomed. Everyone was camped out in the open space terrified to get back to our own homes. All the families shared a small tent and huddle together.
The villages near the epi-centres were completely destroyed. Many were fortunate in cities as their homes escaped with minor cracks but many were left homeless with major cracks in their home and some homes collapsing altogether. The earthquake took its toll on old traditional houses, destroying our heritage, where tourism is major source of income.
Many people who lost their houses are still living in temporary shelters in parks and empty fields, lot of people have rented a room and shared with their families. As there are many who have lost their homes it is hard to find a rooms. As we begin to rebuild our homes we are still feeling the aftershocks.
The government has not given permission to build homes yet; we are still waiting for the new building codes to be developed by the government. We are not sure when this will be issued.
We have formed a committee of 3 from our board members to organise screening and distribution of funds to the affected producers. The producers who have registered their names for help to rebuild their homes has risen to 200.
On behalf of KTS and our producers we would like to thank People Tree and everyone involved for their solidarity and generous efforts in raising funds to help us rebuild our homes. And our hearty thank you to all for your contributions.
The take away message though was empowering- reminding us that we can all contribute and continue to offer much needed support.
Our wider community also rose to the occasion: Vintage Roots sponsored the event by providing the best, ethically sourced organic wine and Coast to Coast direct, provided the necessary supplies to enjoy this with! Joe’s Kid dished up lashings of al dente wonder, which was heartily enjoyed- especially the pistachio brownies.
You can find pictures and video clips from the event on People Tree’s social. Search #ARTS4NEPAL on Twitter. To see where we are up to in our fundraising campaign, please see: http://campaign.justgiving.com/charity/peopletreefoundation/nepal
To organise your own fundraising event, please just click on the link above and select ‘Fundraise for Campaign’ or to donate by text, please text £3.00 (or any amount) to LKQE47 to 70070.
Thanks so much again for all your support.