Last night’s Ladies Night at Bordeaux Quay in Bristol raised a fabulous £700 for TCW and the event was a roaring success.
46 tickets were sold and these lovely ladies enjoyed a range of beauty treatments and cocktails in wonderful female company.
Everyone left very happy, the lucky ones with a fab raffle prize in their new cardboard bags!
TCW’s CEO Wendy Stephenson had hoped to be at the event but had to fly out to India at short notice. The following is an address she had planned to make that we thought we would share here…
I am so sorry that I am unable to be with you all tonight, to hang out with the girls! But in my place is the Indian George Clooney, please meet Balajee one of our management team.
I was asked to record an address for the event but am quite relieved that this is not possible…you will be more so! I hate seeing or hearing recordings of myself and my niece Natalie (in the room) hates it even more –so you are spared the embarrassment, Natalie. It is vanity really, because I think I sound like Joanna Lumley and look like something like Katherine Hepburn, imagine my confusion and horror when the real me is played back!
The idea for this ladies night came from Kelly (thank you, Kelly), when we were all brainstorming about how we might be able to raise some funds for some of the people and their projects that we support both in Bristol and the UK.
But actually, it has become so much more than a fund-raising event. What I have witnessed during the last few weeks is the joy that women experience when they want to come together. The excitement around the office has been noticeable – more so than putting in 100s of wind turbines!
And it slowly dawned on me how much I actually miss the company of women in a social environment and I wondered how many more of you feel the same.
Please don’t get me wrong, I am not a man hater, I love them and have always had many male friends, my male colleagues are wonderful and very supportive, but they do look a bit terrified when I ask them, “does this color suit me”?
I think it’s a fair assumption that many of you here tonight will feel a bit time starved more often than not, there’s work, there’s children if you are lucky enough to have them and there’s the partner, if you are unlucky enough to have one! And my observation is that as a woman you will put everyone else’s needs first, it’s natural, it’s just what we do.
Trenna and Claire, here tonight, recently said to me, “Wendy you look like you need feeding!” I almost replied “But I am not hungry” when something told me that actually these are very spiritual women and they are probably not going to send out for takeaway.
What they have taught me is that we really need to nourish ourselves, but in practice, given that we are not very good at putting our own needs first, how many of us actually do it.
This is the same the world over. In one of the slums in Mumbai where we are working, the doctors found that many of the women would give their food to the rest of the family first leaving themselves without. Many of these women are of child bearing age and this lack of nutrition leads to many birth defects which continues the cycle of hardship for another generation. The doctors working in the RKSS community centre tried to give them extra nutritious food but again they would just give this to their family. The doctors finally came up with a solution, which is to give them nutritional powder, and called it mother’s medicine! This little story serves to illustrate that we don’t always put our own needs first but if we don’t, it can also harm those around us. Sometimes we need protecting from ourselves!
Being in the company of women, can feed us, women, are great empathisers, who want to care for and protect others, it’s our biological instinct to nurture and if we don’t have female company, and yes, sometimes all female company, then I feel something is missing, a vital ingredient which reminds us of the goodness that can exist in the world, reaching out to others and keeping us all just a little bit safer. Women can protect us from ourselves!
So what actually started out as fundraising event, has in fact become, for me, much more meaningful, in the company of women I can find out what colours suit me best, whether my bum looks big in this, and what is the best foundation for my skin tone!
Joking aside, this is all important stuff, coming together is important, not necessarily to save the planet or to discuss a single issue but to empathise and gain nourishment just from being a woman in the company of other women.
So I would like to thank all you beautiful women for coming tonight, to just be in the company of other women and be yourselves, that is pure Joy in itself, I hope you can celebrate this.
I would like to personally thank Kelly, Claire and Eleanor for organizing the event, and the members of the TCW team for supporting, the wonderful beauticians for serving you all, and of course BQ and John for their generous use of the space, as well as all the other contributers of prizes and stalls, and anyone else that I may have forgotten, please forgive me and perhaps John will thank you personally.
I am not sure if we will run another event like this but my one hope is that after tonight many of us will make the effort to try and get together more often, not around a single issue, but just for us.
Finally, to my wonderfully, supportive male colleagues, if I am released to be in the company of women more often, then I am likely to become less combative and you will go home with fewer black eyes!
Bless you all and a little bit of extra love to Natalie!