Saturday, March 10, 2012

The 302nd good thing about Lagos: Small World 2012

When it's February in Lagos, it's time for Small World, the biggest expatriate run charity event in Lagos.  The preparations for this event run almost all year -- there is a very dedicated group of women in the general committee who give untold hours organizing the evening.  This year there were over 30  women's organizations, representing different countries, who set up and decorated a booth, prepared a sample of food representive of their country to serve around 1500 people, and many also prepared a portion of the entertainment.  I helped a bit this year with AWC's booth.  The theme this year was "Circus Spectacular."  The entertainment and decorations were supposed to celebrate the circus tradition within each country. 
We had a group of very talented and creative women working on the decorations for the American Women's Club booth.  I came to a work party and spent a bit of time following their instructions -- something I am capable of doing when someone else is doing the creative thinking!

We made some cute clown costumes for our booth workers.  I tried one on so we could see how they looked.  Pretty fun!

On the Saturday evening of Small World, we entered the area on the grounds of the British school, passing down a road lined with posters highlighting the participating country groups and the charities they had nominated to receive their portion of the proceeds from the event.
Here's the USA's poster.  Our nominated charity was an organization that is renovating a building in a crowded market area.  The building will be a center for occupational training in the arts.  They will train people in lighting, makeup, dance, music and related fields.  The building will hold a community library and they will have classes to help those that need literacy training.

The circus theme led to some fun costumes, booth decorations and dances.

The American booth was really fun.  I sewed all those stripes on the tarps for our tent.  It took a lot longer than what I had expected when I volunteered for the job, but I was glad to do it to help out.
Our decoration team was good at recycling:  the stuffed figures that became the clown, ringmaster and trapeze artists were used in previous Small World booth decor, and the line of wooden little people cutouts that here represent children going to the circus, in a previous year illustrated the international nature of the United States.
This year our booth served food we might eat at the circus:  mini corn dogs, popcorn and caramel corn, lemonade and other drinks and an assortment of candy.  We also had a supply of red clown noses to hand out.  Over 3000 people come to Small World, so it's a big event.  Brent and I took a shift serving food at the booth, but we had plenty of time to sample food from many of the other country booths.  We always end up with full stomachs before we've made the rounds.

The program at the end was fun and nicely done by many of the countries.  My camera doesn't do well in the dark, but with this picture of the American performance, you can see that we had a team with some great costumes.  They did a good job and said they had a fun time practicing for it.

Best of all, Small World this year earned over 37 million Naira (around $235,000) for Nigerian charities.  That's a really good thing!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I never knew about such event.. Wow! it's really good, keep up the good work