Friday, March 04, 2011

The 256th good thing about Lagos: Sixteen years of Small World

I've been in Lagos now for one-fourth of the Small World charity events in Lagos' history, where the expat women's groups get together and work hard to put on food and a show to raise money for Nigerian charities.  This year was the 16th year of Small World and I've been through my own little cycle of Small World participation.  In 2007, I didn't really know anything about it so we didn't go.  Our first Small World in 2008, we bought the tickets and enjoyed the food and the show and I wasn't involved with anything.  In 2009, I helped choose the charity for the American Women's club and I took a shift at the food booth.  Last year, I was over AWC's participation in the event and organized food and also performed with the British group.  It was a busy, stressful event, but really rewarding.  This year, for a number of reasons, the AWC decided not to participate in this event -- and I really felt bad that the Americans weren't there helping with this great evening that raises a lot of money for charity.  But this did allow me to revisit my first year of non-stressful attendance. 

Small World is still going strong despite the abdication of the Americans. They raised over 32 million naira for charity this year.  They now have a very slick looking website. And we had a very nice evening out enjoying food and entertainment.

I didn't get any good pictures of the evening, but I'm going to post some bad ones:

The theme this year was "Go Green."  They wanted to emphasize the importance for the entire planet of protecting our environment.  They used recyclables in the food plates and decorations, used solar powered lighting and recycle bins, they featured fashion made from recycled materials, with the emcee's gowns and also on fashion models on display.

 Here's Brent when we arrived questioning:  "Which country's cuisine should we try first?"  We didn't get to half of the booths before we were stuffed to capacity.
 We did try some pork from the Phillipine's booth....
 We had some performers from the Indian dance team sitting in front of us.  The costumes of all the performers were really spectacular this year.  And we really appreciated that this year, unlike the other years we have attended, there were no outbursts of booing when the group from Israel were performing.  There was noticeably less applause for them than for the Lebanese or Palestinian performers, but at least no rudeness.  I always found that so disturbing.
Hopefully next year the Americans will be back participating in this charity fund-raiser!

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