Fashion 4 Development hosted its second annual Sustainable Goals Banquet on Monday night, kicking off a week of social impact events for the fashion and philanthropic set.
The banquet gathered world leaders, first ladies, diplomats, philanthropists, climate change activists, entrepreneurs and more and began with a red VIP carpet and coincided with the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly. True to the mission that F4D Founder and President, Evie Evangelou, had in founding the organization in 2011, the platform supports the goals of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through partnerships, events and social impact programs – something , to which fashion has become quite accustomed in recent years.
F4D presented the Agents of Change awards to those working on food security, extreme poverty, education and people working for a healthier planet, culture preservation and gender equality.
The awards went to: Hugh Evans and Simon Moss of the non-profit music festival Global Citizen for “Impact to End Extreme Poverty”. The award was accepted by Liza Henshaw, President of Global Citizen (celebrating her 10th run this weekend in New York’s Central Park and Black Star Square in Accra, Ghana); Houston-based Texas Biotechnology Inc. for “Impact in Food Security” with its RezFree soil conditioning product, accepted by Yunus Dogan, Chairman of Texas Biotech; Odessa Rae, filmmaker and producer, CNN documentary “Navalny” for “Impact Through Film”; Richard Kane, Chief Executive Officer of the private jet company Verijet, for “Green Travel” and education especially for “Impact Through Education”.
Mubarak Al-Thani, Head of Development at EAA, accepted the award on behalf of the foundation established by Her Royal Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser. “We have successfully persuaded governments to reconsider their debt and [prioritize] Education,” said Al-Thani upon accepting the award. EAA’s campaigns have reached 11 million people.
Filmmaker Odessa Rae, upon accepting her award, addressed the film’s importance in making democracy a reality. Her documentary “Navalny” accompanies Putin critic Alexej Navalny on his campaign against the Russian president. “I think it’s our responsibility as producers to never underestimate the power of cinema to get a message across and to harness that power,” she said.
There were many performances, beginning with a voguing session with elaborate, glittering costumes (one striking wig was a delicate bush of flowers) and gilded mannequins throughout the Park Avenue performance hall.
Dionne Warwick, in a white suit over a purple shimmery sequined blouse, also performed her 1966 song “What the World Needs Now” after playing a recording of the new song “Free,” which was written by award-winning songwriter Diane Warren and recorded by was produced by Warwick’s son, Grammy-winning producer Damon Elliott. The song is part of the Musicians in the Key of Free initiative to support refugees worldwide.
Following the banquet will be Tuesday’s 10th Annual First Ladies Luncheon, celebrating “Ten Decades of Fashion 1920 through 2020” with special remarks from New York State Senator and Fashion Act Sponsor Alessandra Biaggi as well a film presentation at the Museum of Modern Art Wednesday. In partnership with the Human Kind Institute, the screening will feature “Human Kind” based on the book “Be Your Own Harmonist” by Lola Till.