charity: water 10th Anniversary charity: ball

December 2015. New York City, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Over the last 10 years, charity: water has redefined the typical fundraising gala through its signature event, charity: ball. They constantly utilize new technologies to bring their work to life and inspire guests to give, which has resulted in bringing clean water to hundreds of thousands of people over the years. In line with the organization’s model, 100% of every dollar raised at the gala goes straight to the field to bring more people clean water. The 2015 charity: ball was no different.

charity: water hosted its first ever black-tie, sit-down dinner at the legendary Temple of Dendur at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Upon arrival, guests mingled in the Great Hall amongst charity: water’s hallmark beautiful photographs from the field in Ethiopia. Following cocktail hour, everyone made their way through the Egyptian galleries to dinner at The Temple of Dendur in The Sackler Wing. A stunning backdrop, thanks to lighting from Frost Lighting and décor by Van Vliet and Trap.

Taking advantage of the seated dinner format, charity: water focused its energy on a brief and impactful stage program. Scott Harrison, the organization’s Founder and CEO, welcomed everyone to the 10th anniversary event with an overview of the evening to come, preparing guests for a special experience. Pushing the boundaries once again, charity: water presented the largest simultaneous Virtual Reality viewing of a special film they produced about a girl from Ethiopia named Salem, thanks to support from sponsors Verizon and Samsung. The 8-minute video brought you directly into the field where you experienced firsthand the struggle of life with dirty water and the difference one well makes for a whole community.

Following the viewing, professional auctioneers from Christie’s took the stage to lead another new iteration of charity: water’s unique live auction. Similar to years past, guests were invited to pledge donations by swiping their RFID bracelets programmed and provided by Connect&Go. As always, the auction didn’t consist of expensive prizes or elaborate trips, but simply the opportunity to bring communities across the globe life’s most basic need—clean water. Whereas in years past it was an individual experience, this year the auction fostered a communal concept where individual pledges combined to create their tables’ cumulative amount, creating a bidding competition amongst the tables. Real-time graphics were projected on the wall of the museum thanks to our partner L&M, tracking the donations visually. As certain fundraising levels were reached, guests were treated to surprise champagne toasts. Celebrating the $2.4 million raised and 243 villages that will receive clean water, the evening culminated in a special guest performance by Zach Williams, front man for the Lone Bellow.

Overall, CBX was one for the books and we’re honored to continue to partner with charity: water and help make whatever difference we can.

To learn more about their work or to get involved please visit

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