The biggest event on the Kanchanaburi calendar this summer was the Baan Unrak Fashion and Yoga Show. Held on the Queen’s birthday weekend, the amalgamation was intended to occupy the children during the holiday, raise funds and display our dazzling array of clothes and accessories.
Here at the home we hold a regular teenage girls club, at which we discuss topics such as self esteem and body image. The show was the perfect opportunity to give the girls a boost, so we made sure they were fully involved. Splitting the group into three, our young women nominated themselves for the jobs of nail artists, models and performers and we assigned them tasks accordingly.
We held a series of meetings and training sessions; the first of which involving all twenty two young ladies descending upon our little wooden volunteer house… Despite our best intentions to spend the session calmly designing posters, the evening slowly unraveled and culminated in all of us cavorting around to Beyonce’s Single Ladies, practising our catwalk strut.
In preparation for a stand at the show, we held a nail art workshop. This was a great success and although most were more interested in painting their own nails, it turned out to be something that some would like to pursue as a career.
Choosing outfits for the models was also a lot of fun – the girls ran a riot in the weaving centre, trying on all of the clothes and accessories. We had a few little ones modeling some adorable baby outfits and our two male presenters reluctantly agreed to model some jazzy specialty shirts..!
Three of the girls formed pop group “The So Lovely Sakuri” and prepared a couple of dances, whilst some of the boys put together hip hop and circus routines. All of our performers designed and made their costumes with the assistance of Baan Unrak Weaving (pictures can be found on our Facebook page). So we had quite the production!
Of course on the day we had tears and tantrums from the tots and traumas from the teens… A combination of stage fright, sound issues and Thai timing (Thaiming) meant that things were fashionably late getting going, and our models were far too nervous/excited to remember their order. “But how do I walk?!” was the question on everybody’s lips.
But it was a success – the children had a great time and after their initial hindering nerves were eagerly asking “can I model this too??” at anything and everything they could find. The cakes, as usual, went down a storm, we made a hefty sum from sales of the clothes and we nearly made it the whole way through without the power cutting out! Check out our short Facebook film for footage of the event.
Next on the horizon is a Burma Awareness event – to be held in the Bakery and Shop. This will involve a series of informative talks and film clips in order to educate our community about the human rights abuse in our neighbouring country. The occasion will also include a special Karen dance (performed by our care mothers), cakes and drinks and will mark the launch of our Baan Unrak Weaving sale!