Friday, September 30, 2011
Girl's Night In - The Prelude
I've been meaning to do it. Planned to do it. Wanted to do it. Said I should do it.
But I've never done it.
Nope, not getting a Brazilian OR a tattoo, I'm hosting an official Girl's Night In fundraiser for the Cancer Council on Saturday 22nd October. The idea is to get a bunch of girlfriends together at home and everyone who attends donates what they would have spent on a night out; the cost of dinner, or drinks, or a movie, or coffee and cake, or all of the above if they're feeling really generous. All money raised goes straight to the Cancer Council to raise awareness of Women's cancers, help in research, and offer practical assistance to cancer patients.
Why this, why now?
I've never been luxuriously rolling in cash, so I've never been able to contribute financially in a big way. Just a little bit here, a little bit there. Bought the ribbon. Bought the sunscreen.
I have no medical training, so the chances of me finding a cure for cancer tomorrow are less than diddly squat.
I'm a bit squeamish and a massive sook, I cry at the drop of a tissue, so I've never been able to volunteer in a practical sense. Patients would find themselves wanting to comfort me as I bawl my eyes out at their stories of hope and courage.
So what did I have to give? Well, I have time. A Husband who's away a lot and rapidly growing teenagers afford me some freedom. I have a big backyard. I have some girlfriends who like to party. I have a laptop. And I have some contacts.
So I started emailing. And tweeting. And typing letters (some businesses still don't seem to have websites? really?). And calling. And emailing some more.
And the response was wonderful. (Mostly... but I'll get to that in another post)
I have about 35-40 guests coming, and loads of donated goodies to use for raffles and giveaways. Seriously, I am considering running away with everything. Books, chocolates, jewellery and flushable wipes will get me a long way. Not to mention the free travel bag to pack it all in.
But no. I'll stick around. Just between you and me, I'm kinda looking forward to the night. I know I'll be a bit stressed and frazzled and tired from cleaning my house and organising everything, but once that karaoke microphone gets in my hand and I punch out some Fleetwood Mac... all will be well. (yes, I have Stevie Nicks delusions, although I look and sound more like Lindsay Buckingham)
I only have to read the literature the Cancer Council sent me to remind myself to stay put and not make off with a case full of Kleenex products. Almost 17,000 Australian women will be diagnosed with breast or gynaecological cancer by the end of this year, and will every year. On average, that's 46 women who will be told they have a women's cancer every day. Sadly, well over 4,000 women lose their battle each year. It may be a cliche, but every dollar makes a difference.
$10 helps produce a cancer information book. Imagine being told you have cancer and the room starts spinning and you pretend you're listening to every word the medics are saying but all you can think is "I have cancer". Patients need clear and accurate information they can absorb, at home, in their own time, and this book gives them that.
$50 can help fund one hour of research into a rare type of breast cancer. Imagine you or a friend or family member are diagnosed with a rare type. Every hour of research may help find a better way of diagnosing, or treating, or maybe even curing.
And so on. It all counts.
So while we're having a fun night, dressed in pink, laughing, singing, drinking, eating and possibly finding 101 uses for flushable wipes, we know we'll be helping someone, somewhere... possibly even ourselves one day.
If you wish to sponsor my Girl's Night In by making a donation, go to my home page on the official website and click on the pink "sponsor me" link. I have a very low target set at the moment and would love to be able to raise it.
Over the next couple of posts, I will be thanking and promoting all the individuals and businesses who have donated goodies for my night, so I would love you to keep returning to the blog to check out my list of generous people and give them your support.