In the small amount of free time that I have, I work with an amazing non-profit in Denver called Bad Bettie Project. It’s an organization for millennial women in Colorado that provides a resource for everything from where to get your brows done to where they can find assistance to leave a domestic violence situation.
At the end of the year, our CEO Lauren sent in an application for BBP to attend the Facebook Communities Summit in February. She told me she had applied while actively applying, and neither of us really expected much to come from it. I mean, hundreds of communities on Facebook apply for this summit. Communities that were much larger than our group of 1,400 girls. Fast forward a few weeks and I received a text from Lauren saying that our group was one of the groups selected to attend an all-expenses-paid trip to Facebook HQ for the summit. I might have actually died when she gave me the news.
The weeks leading up to the summit were a whirlwind and then it was time. We ran, literally, through the Denver airport to catch our flight to San Francisco and before we knew it, we were there.
After we arrived and checked into our hotel, Facebook had organized a welcome event that gave us a chance to get our first glimpse of their campus, mingle with other attendees, eat phenomenal finger foods, and participate in a handful of activities ranging from a killer photo station to on the spot personalized poetry! The best part of this night however wasn’t the food or the activities, it was when Ime (VP of Partnerships) addressed the crowd and told us that we were there for a reason. Our communities were hand picked by someone from Facebook, no matter how big or how small, we were meant to be there.
The first full day of FCS was spent at Facebook HQ soaking up the information provided by Facebook employees and speakers throughout the day. Also more food and snacks, so many snacks. Facebook HQ might actually be my heaven? Everywhere I looked there were snacks and coffee – truly amazing. Anyway, we learned about the new products coming to the Facebook platform and how to best utilize them to benefit our communities. By the end of the day, my brain was filled to the brim with ideas of how to strengthen BBP and really make our group the best it can be.
After the speakers were finished for the day, we were shuttled off to the Hiller Aviation Museum for dinner. Before dinner was served, we once again had a handful of activities to help pass the time. We played around with the Oculus which was wildly intense. I screamed while playing a game involving shooting glowing blobs while on a roller coaster. Don’t trust me with your life y’all. There was also another photo booth, with a prop airplane – fitting, and an area where you could fly a drone (didn’t trust myself with that one). Dinner was served and we were able to sit with some of Facebook’s employees and get to know them. The food was wonderful and the company was even better.
The final day of the summit was for more focused topic on specific issues within communities. There were speakers discussing empathy, growth, diversity, and many more. The best part was that the speakers this day were also attendees! It was so nice to hear from people who had actually dealt with the specifics within their own communities and how they were able to grow from those experiences.
After a half day worth of information, we were shuttled off to the airport to await our flight back to Denver. With our heads spinning we did a LIVE announcement to our girls in BBP where we excitedly told them the plans for the upcoming year and what we had learned from the summit.
We’ve been back in Denver for a week now and I’m still reeling from the experience. Being able to have the opportunity to attend FCS was a once in a lifetime experience and I truly cannot wait to see this community grow. Ladies in Colorado – if you’re looking for a resource, some friends, or just a place to vent – check us out and connect!