The evening promised thoughtful interactions and some retrospection. For, Verve and Nanhi Kali collaborated with Oscar award-winning director Megan Mylan to throw the spotlight on the girl child – and her journey to achieving a degree of independence.
The invitees gathered in the ground floor hall of the Mahindra and Mahindra, Gateway Building, South Mumbai and the room was soon packed with an attentive audience that awaited the viewing of Mylan’s documentary After My Garden Grows. The guests walked in, greeted familiar faces and made themselves comfortable around the tables that dotted the room. As cocktails and mouth-watering niblets did the rounds, the conversation swirled with gentle ease.
The lights soon dimmed, and Mylan’s tale about Monika unfolded on the screen. Grappling with poverty and other challenges that affect girls most, Monika’s tale was a complex but hopeful story. Her garden is her oasis and her support – that becomes her life-defining moment. Simply told, the emotion came through effectively and one did not really need to look at the sub-titles to realise and applaud Monika’s growing self-confidence.
Speaking eloquently post the viewing, Mylan was highly appreciative of the opportunity of showcasing her work. “I wanted to focus on a story where you clearly see the difference a small investment in a girl can make,” she said. Rajyalaxmi Rao then addressed the gathering and, touching upon the need for safety, she pointed out, “I am involved with the effort to distribute small-sized pepper sprays that girls can easily carry – and use in times of need.” Sheetal Mehta of Nanhi Kali received warm praise for the work the NGO is doing in educating the underprivileged girl child in India.
The evening ended with a delicious spread. As the guests left, they were presented with a package containing copies of Verve and IQ!
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