Posts Tagged ‘Africa

19
Dec
12

Charity:Water Brings Generosity To Whole New Levels

CharityWaterInteriorAround the holidays people like to give and boy did they ever at this year’s spectacular Charity:Water Ball.

The annual glamorous event which raises money to build safe and clean drinking water around the world, received a generous 3 million dollar holiday gift, courtesy of the over 2,000 folks that came to the ball attended by some of the most beauty people, sexy supermodels, famous entrepreneurs, celebrities and the NY media.

Charity:Water founder Scott Harrison and beautiful wife Viktoria welcomed guests to the event

Charity:Water founder Scott Harrison and beautiful wife Viktoria welcomed guests to the event

Despite the tough ongoing economic woes, Hurricane Sandy’s devastation and the not-so-exciting Wall Street numbers, folks still opened their wallets and hearts to help people around the world become self-sufficient in getting safe and clean drinking water.

The organization-run by good friend and brilliant businessman Scott Harrison and his team of amazing individuals, has taken Charity:Water each year to new levels of success proving that growth and results go hand in hand.

Some of the famous personalities at the event included the talented comedian Seth Myers, actor David Schwimmer, Twitter founder Jack Dorsey,Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley, award-winning actor John Flattery, the stunning supermodel Anne V.,beautiful actress Sophia Bush, TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie, Charity Water devotee and talented actress Jessica Lowndes, Fern Mallis, and Whoopi Goldberg

TOMS founder Blake Mycoski and stunning wife Heather Mycoski pose for The Ravi Report

TOMS founder Blake Mycoski and stunning wife Heather Mycoski pose for The Ravi Report

From the first project six years ago in a refugee camp in Uganda where six water wells were build, to now almost 7,000 water wells in over 20 countries serving over 2.5 million people, Charity: Water CLEARLY cares about the world.

They also know how to throw a great party. Beautiful people+ sexy models+ generous folks+ celebrities+ passion to give third world countries clean water= the annual Charity:Water Ball. Plain and simple folks.

The red carpet was decorated with trademark yellow canisters which paved the way for the captivating and generous folks to make their way into what many referred to as “the event of the year” which was held at the Lexington Avenue Armory in Manhattan.

Actress Sophia Bush excites the media with her entrance!

Actress Sophia Bush excites the media with her entrance!

“I am going to President Obama’s inaugural in Jan.,” said one stunning model who was Photoshoot ready with her crystal blue eyes, statuesque build and perfect makeup. “But honestly, I’m more excited to me here.”

“I canceled a star-studded party to be here tonight because Scott is like family to so many of us,” stated a tall, gorgeous sari wearing Indian hottie with hazel eyes, flawless skin and enough bling to buy a small country.

The event included the traditional Waterwalk where guests carry a yellow canister filled with water to experience what it feels like for people in poor nations to walk daily to get water. The Waterwalk helped bring clear water to over 19,400 people in India. (a country that loves Scott!)

Scott Harrison and Sophia Bush get ready for Charity:Water action!

Scott Harrison and Sophia Bush get ready for Charity:Water action!

These folks are so passionate about helping the world and because Scott Harrison is such a damn nice guy who cares about the world getting fresh drinking water, that everyone wants to help him in every way they can.

I’ve known Harrison for years and I will say this: the guy would give the shirt off his back to help people get clean and safe drinking water.

TOMS founder and generous businessman Blake Mycoskie who recently got married to a stunning Heather Mycoskie (yes, she’s a ten folks!) has been a long time friend and supporter of Charity:Water and spoke exclusively to The Ravi Report about his involvement.

RR: Blake, always nice seeing you. How did you get involved in Scott’s dream?

Mycoskie: Scott and I started about the same time. I have been a big supporter of his dream ever since the beginning. I am so proud of him, he is like a brother and great friend and we love collaborating and doing these events together.

Ravi Yande poses with Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley

Ravi Yande poses with Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley

RR: What Scott has done with water, you have done with shoes through TOMS. What do you find so satisfying about what you do?

Mycoskie: The great thing about what I do is being able to go to these third world countries and give back to the kids by giving them shoes and sunglasses. Every country I go to is always a different experience and that keeps things exciting and fresh but most of all, helping kids and the world out is really a fantastic thing which is why I started TOMS.

Footnote: You must read Mycoskie’s book Start Something That Matters and trust me, you will want to jump on the band wagon to help Scott as well. Great book!

Harrison’s charity has expanded now into more countries then ever before.


RR: Another amazing event Scott! It’s fully grown into something large and global. Clearly you can see the passion and devotion people have to Charity:Water. What were some of the challenges you faced in 2012?

Illusionist David Blaine poses for The Ravi Report

Illusionist David Blaine poses for The Ravi Report

Harrison: One of the hardest things Ravi is managing the growth. Every year we get bigger and bigger with more wells being built and more people wanting to get involved in helping the world. So it’s been fun but also challenging at the same time because of the extensive growth. We are now working in 20 countries.

Guest experienced first hand what it would be like to pump water from a well

Guest experienced first hand what it would be like to pump water from a well

RR: The more you grow, the more you have to face in terms of foreign rules, regulations, etc. How has that part of the foreign expansion?

Harrison: Well, challenges include some political issues and we’ve had some water quality issues like fluoride that we ran into. But we do have a GREAT team that helps me so we are doing what we can to over come those challenges. The harder it gets, the more passionate and committed the team has gotten.

RR: Despite the ongoing economy issues and Hurricane Sandy effecting so many New Yorkers, Charity:Water had a good year. Your thoughts?

Harrison: We are very lucky. Despite all the ongoing economic issues, we grew in 2012. People have been responding, have been giving and have been extremely generous to us. The business model of 100 percent going to the building projects really helps and people see all the results for themselves.

Actress Jessica Strup smiles on the red carpet for the media

Actress Jessica Strup smiles on the red carpet for the media

Dedicated actress Jessica Strup has been involved with the organization for years and finds it both fulfilling and gratifying.

RR: Jessica, so glad to see you here tonight. What are your thoughts on the fact that now Charity:Water is active in 20 countries?

Strup: I am so proud of Scott and his team. I got involved in Charity:Water years ago when I wanted to do something for others. They have so much potential to get even bigger and they will get even bigger. I mean, look around you..these people are here just to help Charity:Water grow and at some point there will be safe and clean water for everyone! It will happen!

RR: You have been to Ethiopia and other third world countries and have seen poverty first hand. How has that effected you in your work with Charity:Water?

Strup: It was heart wrenching to see how they live in Ethiopia. I come from a small town in South Carolina so it was a true eye- opening experience for me to go to these countries and see how people live. But they knew that we were there to help them help themselves and it makes you see the world completely differently.

Supermodel stunner Anne V. in between her crazy worldwide modeling schedule, still finds time to help out Harrison and his team.

Special Charity:Water Birthday wish tree showed images of donations from around the world

Special Charity:Water Birthday wish tree showed images of donations from around the world

RR: Great seeing you again Anne. How was being involved with Charity:Water effected your way of seeing the world?

Anne V: I live in NY so we are so lucky to have access to drinking water, bottled water, designer water, every kind of water and flavor. It’s such a simple concept- fresh drinking water and it’s amazing that Charity Water has done something to help the world with it.


RR: What does being involved in Charity:Water personally mean to you?

Anne V: For me it’s not only about the glamorous part, it’s about helping. I come from a middle class family in Russia, so I have seen struggles. I am so blessed to do so many wonderful things and for me honestly, my best achievements are when I do things like getting involved in helping others and that gives me a lot of joy. As with a lot of things, we need awareness and I do hope that more people will support what Scott does.

Beautiful actress Jessica Lowndes, a long time supporter of the charity, got involved because she believed in Scott’s mission from day one.

Captivating actress Jessica Lowndes smiles for The Ravi Report

Captivating actress Jessica Lowndes smiles for The Ravi Report

Lowndes: It’s always been in my heart to help people with needs and Charity:Water does that so passionately. We take water for granted and for Scott to provide safe and clean drinking water to all these countries and people is simply amazing. He is tackling one of the biggest issues going on in the world today.

Tech genius and extraordinaire Dennis Crowley co-founder of Foursquare and Dodgeball and good friend of Harrison, believes constant awareness is the key factor in keeping the charity momentum going strong.

Crowley: I think having events like Charity Water and working closely with the folks from the NY community especially the tech community to help raise awareness it’s so important to tell the story. I was just talking about the Hurricane Sandy victims to some friends and even though people are still suffering from the aftermath, it’s not in the news as much so we’re not reminded of it as much as before.

Check out http://www.charitywater.org for updates on the continued expansion of the global water wells. Tip for next year’s ball: buy your tickets early as they continue to sell out every year.

The journey continues…and let’s make it a safe, peaceful and generous one in 2013!

Ravi

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06
Jul
09

United Nations Combines Culture and Wildlife in “Shared Destiny” Photo Exhibit.

"Shared Destiny" opening night party

The UN welcomes culture & art together through wildlife photographs

Picture this. A room full of beautiful  people. Some dressed elegantly in exotic and traditional outfits while others are in trademark & stylish Chanel black cocktail dresses lingering among  the most amazing photos of wildlife  in the world.

A diverse array of guests attended the "Shared Destiny" opening at the UN Headquarters

A diverse array of guests attended the "Shared Destiny" opening at the UN Headquarters

Let me first start off by saying this is one captivating photo exhibit that you are not going to want to miss. Seriously folks. Make your way to the United Nations Headquarters before July 12 to see one of the most amazing wildlife exhibits you will ever see on this side of the east coast. Filled with images from Africa and the Arctic,  two of the world’s most famous photographers have come together to bring awareness  in help protecting animals around the world.

The Harp seal smiles for Nigel Barker.

The Harp seal smiles for Nigel Barker.

Internationally known  celebrity, photographer  &  personal friendNigel Barker  along with acclaimed author and gifted photographer Luo Hong collaborated together with the United Nations to bring a thought provoking photographic exhibition called “Shared Destiny: Wildlife from Africa to the Arctic.”

It is an EXCELLENT photo exhibit showcasing  some of  the most beautiful and innocent animals in the world.

The Ravi Report attended the opening reception on World Environment Day a  few weeks ago along with hundreds of well wishers and fans of the photographers who waited months for the exhibit to open.

Bollywood Icon Amitabh Bachchan being honored at the UN as Goodwill Ambassador

Bollywood Icon Amitabh Bachchan being honored at the UN as Goodwill Ambassador

As an international  journalist & producer, I’ve been covering and   attending cultural events at the United Nations for several years and I  always have learned so much more about the world from meeting different groups of people.  In 2005  when Bollywood iconic movie legend Amitabh Bachchan was given the honor of Goodwill Ambassador, I was there front row and center watching the special moment that brought India and the UN together through Bollywood.

This exhibit was no different. It brought countries together through the lenses of Barker and Hong.  Both individuals have been admired and respected for years for their work so this exhibit was just an extention of their talents. I spoke to a few  guests who have been following the careers of Barker and Hong  and they said that they were quite familiar with their work and their passion for the preservation of wildlife.

Gifted photgrapher Luo Hong being interviewed by the foreign & UN press

Gifted photgrapher Luo Hong being interviewed by the foreign & UN press

In a full blown art gallery type of display, the  show depicts some of  most intimate moments of the beautiful  seals, penguins, polar bears, giraffes  and other wildlife that Barker and Hong captured on their expedition.  The collaborated efforts from two of the world’s most sought after photographers was much more than just an exhibit,  it was  more of  bringing together culture, international dialogue and the importance of  preservation of wildlife around the world.

Giraffes from the African wildlife by Luo Hong

Giraffes from the African wildlife by Luo Hong

“I am so happy to see that people from all over the world have come to see this” said a stunning Indian lady admiring the photos while fixing her silk sari standing next to the foreign press interviewing Hong.

Both Barker and Hong sent out a very important message with their work through the help of the United Nations – that safety, respectability and environmental protection of animals is something that we can all help in preserving making it a safer planet for these beautiful creatures to live on. That message came across loud and clear with many of the guests who also  felt the same sentiments echoed in the exhibition.

“I can’t believe anyone would want to harm these beautiful animals” said one concerned guest who was familiar with both photographers work through their careers.

World famous lensman Nigel Barker smiles for The Ravi Report

World famous lensman Nigel Barker smiles for The Ravi Report

Another guest who had followed Barker and his work with the seals through the Humane Society last year, said that she and others were interested in how these animals are being treated and in what way could she and her friends get involved in trying to help bring awareness to the issue of saving the wildlife.

“I have always loved animals and totally understand and appreciate what Barker and Hong are doing with their work and dedication to animals. ” she commented.

“Shared Destiny: Wildlife From Africa to the Arctic” exhibit runs through July 12, 2009. The location of the show the United Nations Headquarters Visitors Entrance on 46st and 1st Avenue. It’s free to the public.  A MUST SEE FOLKS!! Make this part of your summer things to do list.

The Journey continues…

Ravi

14
Mar
09

NY EVENTS: CHARITY:WATER & BRIDGE ART FAIR WELCOME ART TO NY.

With NY Art Week almost coming to an end, many incredible  events went on in the city bringing deep awareness and attention to the world of international art and charitable causes. Private museum parties,celebrity cocktail receptions and one amazing party that drew over 1200 people to Chelsea Market on March 10 was indeed one of the  best art parties in every shape and form during the week.  The pictures speak for themselves.artwork-011

Charity:Water, www.charitywater.org,  the organization that provides safe and clean drinking water to underdeveloped nations around the world, celebrated NY Art Week by having an amazing photography exhibit opening with a custom made wishing well that drew many of the beautiful, fashionable and stylish people to the Manhattan Chelsea Market . Many got to view some of the most captivating and thought provoking photos provided by Scott Harrison, the founder and President of Charity:Water. Guests mingled as they saw images of children carrying the famed yellow containers of clean drinking water and danced and listened to music by The Kin, Rob Murat and others playing the night away.  

Founder and President of Charity:Water Scott Harrison welcomes guest to the event.

Founder and President of Charity:Water Scott Harrison welcomes guest to the event.

“I have been to all of their events. You mention Charity:Water and you know it’s going to be a great event” said a gorgeous brunette wearing a sexy Donna Karan dress with a plunging neckline.

The coolest part of the exhibit is that there is a custom build wishing well set up by multimedia artist Thomas Beale . All the money from the well goes to building safe water wells around the world..so GO DOWN TO THE WELL!!  Grab all that unwanted change that is just sitting around  in jars and bring it down to The Chelsea Market Charity: Water well and help the people of Africa and India get clean drinking water!

charitywater022

The Chelsea Market created the perfect atmosphere for the photo exhibit

The event  raised over $30,000  which will be enough to build 6 wells and 100% of all money raised from the event goes directly to the on-the-ground projects. For those who missed the event (next time buy your tickets early!) the photo exhibit and wishing well are on display until May 31 so get those coins ready!!

Another interesting and exciting art party during Art Week was the opening night of the Bridge Art  Fair which ran from  March 5th-8th  at the historic Waterfront  building in Manhattan. Rows of the most beautiful artwork from famous painters and photographers around the world were displayed for guests to view and purchase.

The event is globally well known and usually draws extremely famous and up and coming artists who often see the fair was a platform to display their work internationally.  It’s also a way for museum curators, devoted art fans and patrons to experience viewing  contemporay and modern art pieces, paintings and sculptures all under one big roof with over 50 exhibit booths. It was heaven for those that have never been to an art fair before.

Bridge Art Fair opening night reception

Bridge Art Fair opening night reception

“What’s really interesting about this show is that artists from all over the world come together and show the diversity of their talent. You can’t beat that” said one extremely cute blond displaying her pearly whites  gleaming through dark red covered lips.

Thanks to Workhouse Publicity (www.workhousepr.com)  for doing an outstanding  job organizing the event and making sure that guests and press were taken care of. Thousands of people were greeted with grace and the press were given prompt access to the event and artists. Great job WP!

art-0271I hope you all enjoyed the NY Art Week and we able to  experience  meeting world renowned artists, attend some great parties and appreciate and learn more about the world of art. I know I did.

Ravi

04
Dec
08

NY GALA ALERT: DEC. 15: CHARITY:WATER GALA: GIVE THE DRINK OF LIFE

The next time you pick up a fancy bottle of crystal clear water and are about to quench your thirst, take a second if you will to just imagine that bottle of  water being filthy, muddy and filled with bacteria and other elements dangerous to your health. Not very appealing, huh?  Well, thanks to Scott Harrison Founder and President of Charity:Water organization, www.charitywater.org, thousands of people around the world  now have safe and clean drinking water. Through his dedication and endless efforts Scott & his team have been providing clean and healthy drinking water to thousands  in underdeveloped countries that are subjected to dirty and unhealthy drinking water.

In  two years Charity:Water has developed 1, 030 water projects in 13 countries allowing 500K people to have clean and safe  drinking clean water. Now that’s incredible!

His annual Charity:Water Gala Benefit scheduled on December 15, 2008 at The Metropolitan Pavillion located at 125 West 18th Street brings out the best of New Yorkers and is a way for people to help donate and help numerous countries including Africa, India and Guyana to have clean drinking water. Tickets for the gala can be purchased online at www.charitywater.org.

Water Benefit on Dec. 15.

Talented Actor and long time supporter Adrian Grenier will co-host Charity:Water Benefit on Dec. 15.

I attended and covered the event last year and let me say one thing. It was simply incredible. 1500 of the most beautiful, elegantly dressed and generous people you will ever meet. Large poster size images of children from around the world are displayed through the venue attached with stories about how their lives have been changed through Charity:Water.  A list celebrities, supermodels, socialites & famous New Yorkers mingled with the guests during the night learning more about the organization and how they can help.  Glamorous red carpet arrivals laced with celebrities and national press all came out to support Scott and his wonderful organization.  Honestly, it’s an event that you don’t want to miss!

 The most rewarding part of the evening is you get to see how your donations are being utilized around the world and how many people are benefiting from the generosity of others. All for the sake of clean drinking water. It’s a great feeling.

For all those “Entourage” fans, the gala this year will be hosted by superstar Adrian Grenier who is as humble as any star can be along side the stunning supermodel and very gracious Jessica Stam. I met and interviewed both of them last year and the passion and concern for people is visibly seen in their eyes.

Water

Co-hosts supermodel Jessica Stam and actor Adrien Grenier are long time supporters of Charity:Water

A  $20 dollar bottle of water can give so many people the drink for life. That’s a price of a movie these days with oily popcorn. Just think, after you watch the movie and eat the popcorn, what do you have? Nothing. A $20 dollar donation goes 100 percent towards building  water wells and providing clean water for the people of Africa and other nations. I spoke to a few patrons last year at the gala who had travelled to the countries where Scott has done work and were so pleased with the progress Charity:Water is doing they continue to support his work.
So the next time you pick up that clean, sparkling bottle of water, you may want to think of Charity:Water and how you can help in spreading the wealth of clean and safe drinking water.  The event sells out fast so for tickets go online at www.charitywater.org.
Hope to see you at the event!

Ravi




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