Last Sunday was my big event and it ended with a bang. Well, I shouldn’t say my event because it really wasn’t my event, it was the Children of Myanmar’s event and we managed to raise a whopping RM27,000 in 4 hours of sales in Bangsar Village 1, right outside Starbucks and Village Grocers. It was AMAZING.
Why? Because this started from me asking some Moms for some pre-loved clothes to bring to Myanmar. Fast forward a few weeks, and I’m suddenly collaborating with Miss Money Penny and Val Dombey, professional story teller, and just me.
The 3 of us, met over FACEBOOK, believe it or not whilst I was on a FACEBOOK forum asking for pre-loved clothes, got together exactly 3 times to organise this entire event. The first was a hi-hi get to know you better kind of session and we discussed a bit about what we needed to do to book 25 tables and attract kids to participate in it.
Our 2nd meeting was really fine-tuning the details of the event and finding a venue. So much hard work was involved, I kid you not. I wrote so many letters and made phone calls but only managed to do door to door sales for half a day. We had to chase people to host our humble event, chase people to spread the word for the event, ask people to participate in the event, we had to organise sponsors to fill some goody bags so that the kids who worked so hard went home with something, even if it was something really modest, we had to get some prizes for the winners (this involved picking up individual products from various locations), we had to contact the media so we had some form of coverage no matter how small (this involved various communications again to at least 10 media sources), we had to design the exercise (this involved a lot of thought and planning), we had to find an emcee and find a sound system as the mall did not have one, how everything would come together, design the competition, the scoring system, negotiate the terms and conditions with the various people whom we had to coordinate with, we had to take a million and one calls for all sorts of questions (can we do this or that? what is this about? How this or that? You name it), we had to design logos (a big thank you to 15 year old Luqman for designing the MAD logo) and buntings and marketing and promotional material (again, lots of time and communications over the phone and emails involved), we had to design and print the goody bags, we had to set up rules and regulations for the participants, we had to design and print certificates for the kids, we had to prepare for the entrepreneurial workshop, we had to print stuff etc etc etc all within a short span of weeks and in between those weeks, some of us were travelling (me in Myanmar for a week, for example) and 2 of us were hands on Moms of young children. How did we do it?
We’re fucking crazy, that’s what it was.
But we pulled it off.
We pulled it off and managed to raise a whopping RM27,000 in 4 hours of sales by the children. 26 tables + the organiser’s table selling all sorts of knick-knacks to raise money for the Children of Myanmar.
This completes my goals for this year for the Children of Myanmar. I wanted to raise RM50,000. It’s done.
So just to highlight the event in summary for T1 and myself personally, T1 won the Most Creative Business Award in Helping to Improve the Life of Another Child. She really wanted to win the Most Enterprising Award because there was a trophy involved but she didn’t. She sold on that day, 80 hand sewn tissue pouches that were sewn over 6 WEEKS by Nana, Aunty Nun (my sister-in-law) and Godma Jamie (T1’s Godmother from Rotterdam)……T1 did 2 complete ones but in the end kept pricking herself so she delegated the task to her elves and just offered design consultancy. Even T2 did one. I wonder who got that…..Our cost for the top grade fabric and the DMC thread was RM300-400? (at cost price) but with the labour cost was a bit more. We sold each tissue pouch for RM10 so not much profit but in any case, everything went to the Children of Myanmar.
Some of the tissue pouches sewn by T1 and her elves….(T2’s is shown below right, hehe)
Bless T1 though because although she did not spend hours sewing the tissue pouches, she did spend hours drawing and colouring some art work for sale with the Myanmar theme and sold each of her works for RM50. These were all drawn in Myanmar, some together with the Children of Myanmar and we got them framed with colourful Ikea frames that cost us I think RM13 per frame. Better profit margins here. And bless the people who bought all her work because she ain’t exactly Picasso nor Leonardo.
T1’s artwork from Myanmar (on the left) and the trophy she did not win…….see, even organising the trophy TOOK FRIGGING WORK!!! She was truly disappointed despite winning the Most Creative Business Award, go figure….
For me, I was so busy running about that day that my mind was everywhere. Half of me had to ensure that T1 was OK doing her sales sheets and recording her sales correctly, and then half of me had to take care of the participants, give them lunch (thank you, Songket – if you want your kids to experience a cultural dance Malaysia, take them to Songket for dinner, authentic Malay food and an exciting dance performance in colourful costume for every state), distribute the cupcakes (thank you, Bisou – have you ever ordered a Bisou Birthday Cake? They’re not expensive and very yummy), collect their score sheets, take lots of photos for whatever reason (thank you, MK!), collect balloons and tie them up (NO thank you, Balloon Buzz, because I had to call you so many times over several weeks to chase you for sponsorship, including calling the HQ and despite promising to return my call several times, never did, and in the end I just PAID for those miserable balloons. I know you don’t need my business but shame on you for not being to tell me, sorry, I cannot sponsor a few balloons because I am too busy or stingy for that); set up stall for T1 (because she had slept late the night before busy preparing for the event)……oh, I was all over the place. I felt so bad that I couldn’t catch up with all my supporters who had come to the event but I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for coming.
Some pics of the work we had to do the day before the event – organising tables, making table numbers, wrapping prizes, cutting out stories for the Children of Myanmar’s drawings…..etc
The performers: we had Amrita Soon, Malaysia’s child talent singing her own tunes….
And the Brazilian Capoeira kids performing their stunts!! It was so crowded that I couldn’t see their performance despite standing on a chair!! DAMN!!! There were kids walking around promoting their stalls…..
The kids sold all sorts of things from Wikki Stix to sushi lollies…..
To songs and tattoos and cupcakes……….
To cookies and jewellery…..and these were the most amazing lemon coconut cookies I had ever tasted!
Bless T1, despite working so hard for her own table, she also had to prepare all the work for the organizer’s table and made the signages for the sale of the Children of Myanmar’s hand made cards and their respective drawings…..
It was a great success. Thank you to the Capoeira kids who raised RM2,500 in that RM27,000. T1’s table made a lot of money from generous donors and all in all, I am very pleased with the result so THANK YOU ALL who helped me in this effort in raising funds for the Children of Myanmar.