Written by: Clare Lovelace
Raising The Village’s Big 5 event was a huge success with almost 200 people in attendance at the Hotel Ocho in downtown Toronto. With so many like minded people in one space the atmosphere was electrified with the buzz of passionate conversation and the generation of fresh ideas. African drummers stole the show with their electrifying opening performance, setting the mood for the rest of the evening.
The event was held to showcase the (big) five ways we are unique in our approach to development:
- Locally driven: Our projects and determined and led by Ugandans
- Hard to Reach: We partner with extremely remote, often forgotten villages
- Tailored Solutions: Every project is unique to reach each village’s specific and local needs
- One time investment: Sustainable projects mean villages dont need continued investment to uphold the changes
- Innovations: We are not afraid to develop unique solutions to solve villages challenges.
Various interactive exhitbits were set up around the venue to give guests a glimpse into the challenges communities in rural Uganda are facing every day and the solutions RTV are helping to provide.
Jerry can time trials were a huge success with guests unleasing their competitive streak and battling it out around a track carrying cans full of water. The life size beehive fence was a great example of our innovative solutions – who would have believed that the humble bee could prevent the formidable elephant from trampling crops? The fully functional tippy tap gave insight into how simple inexpensive technology can vastly improve hygeine and sanitation and ultimately improve lives. These are just a few examples of the exhibits on display, we will be showcasing each one individualy in a series of blogs over the next few weeks so keep watching this space!
The evening was concluded with an inspirational and moving speech by RTV’s founder Shawn Cheung (link to RTV team page) which was followed by a video clip about RTV’s journey so far which will be posted very soon so stay tuned! I dare anyone to watch it and not feel motivated to get involved.
Finally the Big 5 was a chance to look to the future which is looking bright for RTV. In 2012 we launched our ’20 x 14′ goal – to be working with 20 villages in Sub-saharan Africa by 2014. As we near the halfway point we’re on track and are due to reach our 10th village by the end of the year. We’ve also reached a huge landmark this year – 10,000 individuals benefiting from the RTV programs. With the continued support of all our donors and volunteers, we are looking forward to reaching our goal of reaching 20,000 individuals by the end of 2014.
Thank you so much to everyone who made our annual event such a success. We hope to see you at next year’s event and we are very excited about how much we can achieve together between now and then.