A Hollaback! cocktail party is a fun way to fundraise and bring awareness to street harassment by inviting supporters, other organizations, and legislators to enjoy an evening of music and games. Here are some steps and ideas for hosting a HOLLAcocktail party:
- Decide on the party guests that you would like to attend the party. The intended guests can be legislators, female activists, Hollaback! supporters, and other involved community leaders.
- Choose someone to speak about Hollaback! for at least five minutes during the party. You can choose to do this or you could have a community leader speak about Hollaback!
- Set a date for the party. Select a date that is related to the theme of your party. Examples include a holiday, the anniversary of the launch of your Hollaback! site, anti-street harassment week, or a political event. In the U.S. March is women’s history month and April is sexual harassment awareness month.
- Select a venue for the party while keeping in mind the party guests that will be attending. If most of your guests live in a particular area try to select a location that is driving distance and near public transportation. The party can be held at your house or at a rented space.
- Find entertainment for the party, which could be a performer or band, a hired DJ, or a volunteer who has an appropriate sound system and music. You should create a diverse playlist that everyone will enjoy. Be sure to include anti-street harassment and female empowering songs.
- Choose the food and drinks that will be served at the party. You can have the event catered or you can have volunteers make finger foods, snacks, and drinks that guests can enjoy at the party. Be sure you include non-alcoholic beverages as drink options.
- Promote the party. Once you have finalized the date, location, and time of the party you can create flyers to post in areas of your community, advertise the party on social networking sites, or personally invite selected guests via email. Inform guests of any ticket costs and if the event is free you can encourage donations. Remind guest that all proceeds from the party will go to Hollaback!, a 501 C3 non-profit organization.
- Come up with cool activities and fun ideas that will keep your party guests engaged and talking about street harassment. Here are some ideas:
- Have a signature pink HOLLAcocktail drink at your party
- Have guests write about their street harassment experiences on Stick-It notes and post the notes around the party (Hollaback NYC did this at their “Holladay” themed party)
- Have a storytelling bar at your party where your guests can use computers to upload their stories to the Hollaback! blog. You can hand out Hollaback! pins or pink tiaras to guests who tell their stories!
- Have a photo booth with anti-street harassment signs that guests can hold in their pictures. You could also have a video camera in the photo booth to record guests sharing their street harassment experiences. (Hollaback! Como hosted a benefit show with a photo booth).
- Set up a projector and have pictures of anti-street harassment signs and photos from Hollaback! events showing throughout the party.
- Have a silent auction where you give away Hollaback! gear, anti-street harassment posters, or items donated by organizations and businesses. Hand out bidding sheets to guests and have them place their bid for each item on their sheets. Collect the bidding sheets and announce the winners who made the highest bid for each item at the end of the party.
- Play fun party games by changing traditional party activities to anti-street harassment activities. (Ex. You could have guests play “Pin The Tail on the Harasser” or “Duck, Duck, Harasser”)
- Your guests may be interested in having your Hollaback! site co-host their future parties and events. You can create Hollaback! party packs that include a CD with your favorite anti-street harassment songs, Hollaback! stickers, Hollaback! tote bags, and other promotional items.
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