Well what a busy, busy couple of weeks. It’s usually hard enough to stay up to date with everything happening at the charity but of course right now we’re in the throes of organising our next (world famous) Underwear & Swimwear Show.
This years event is bigger, better, and more wide reaching than before; considering over 20,000 people watched the last one that’s quite something – if you haven’t watched it already do so now:
To be honest it’s been a rocky road, with only a small team in the office an event of this scale is a major commitment for the charity, both financially (we hope to break even on ticket sales and other fundraising) and emotionally (I think everyone has come pretty close to a nervous breakdown dealing with every type of stress from ticket sales and corporate support, to filming interviews with the models and organising the stylists and photography).
The concept has proved to be controversial, there have been a couple of raised eyebrows and even a letter concerned about using sexuality and nudity for a charity. The National Secretary of another ostomy charity even helps prove how groundbreaking it is by describing the event as ‘disgusting’.
Detractors are in a very small minority however; this event has captured the imagination and enthusiasm of thousands of people who want to show the world that having a stoma is not a barrier to leading a full and active life, and to push back against the negative images that are often painted of body image by people who do not understand what an ostomy is, or what it means to the 22,000 people having the surgery every year in the UK.
I’m looking forward to seeing many friends of the charity, old and new, on Wednesday night. If you don’t have tickets I’m afraid all the VIP seats have sold out, but there are still free ‘Show Only’ tickets available on the website.