This coming week, my comedy improv pals and I will be putting on three benefit shows for Smile Train in Denver and nearby Lakewood. I thrust the idea upon my fellow Rodents last year and they jumped right in. Together, we raised $1500, enough to provide cleft surgery for SIX kids. I couldn't believe it.
This year, we've upped the ante - our goal is $3,000 - but we've spread it out over three nights, not just two. Also, we're going to have help from our pals at Monkey's Uncle, The Denver Wigs and several ROUS alumni. The venues are secured, the flyers are posted, emails are sent and the Smile Train t-shirts have arrived.
Now, we just cross our fingers and hope that people show up. And that we're collectively funny.
No matter what, Smile Train will get some money (We've already raised a healthy amount through our online donation page!) and a few kids will get a new life. It's hard enough dealing with a facial deformity here in the Western world, but in third-world countries so many of them are abandoned, killed, ostracized or simply treated as though cursed. Such an easy fix to a big problem - it's irresistible to me.
Also, it's been a handy reminder of how much I love putting on big events. In the corporate/VC world, I did my share and as nerve-wracking as it is, it's a helluva lot more fun than being chained to a computer all day long. Blech.