Kendal Unity Festival Sun Jun 23rd

The Kendal Unity Festival celebrates the strengths and diversity of the people of Kendal by building community cohesion, celebrating diversity, fostering good relations and promoting understanding between and within its diverse communities.

The Festival is aimed at advancing equality and challenging prejudice and discrimination through voluntary action and active citizenship. The Festival provides opportunities for formal and informal community groups, networks, public, private and third sector organisations to showcase a range of activities on offer within the community that local people can get involved in. It will raise awareness of shared issues and create opportunities for learning new skills, including tasting cuisines and cultures from around the world.

Kendal Unity Festival 2018

The first Kendal Unity Festival will take place on June 23rd 2018 coinciding with National Refugee Week and the Great Get Together activities marking the death of Jo Cox, MP.

The main programme will take place between 10am and 4pm in and around Kendal town centre with complementary world music performances and entertainment taking place in the nearby Brewery Arts Centre and other venues.

The Kendal Town Council, South Lakeland District Council and Cumbria County Council members and staff agreed in principle to support the organising committee of the Festival.

Kendal Unity Festival Offers

  • A unique opportunity for voluntary and community groups to showcase their work and share information about their services and projects;
  • A free public event appealing to all ages and abilities;
  • Members of the public attending short taster ‘feel good’ workshops;
  • A chance to learn more about some of the groups taking part, and listen to poetry and music;
  • Opportunities to learn a new language or skill;
  • Global Coffee Morning and all day International Tasting sessions;
  • Performances from local drumming groups, folk musicians and dancers from diverse local communities;
  • A day of ‘unity in the community’ by advancing equality and celebrating diversity.

The Key Benefits of the Kendal Unity Festival

  • Supporting projects/initiatives to build community cohesion and foster good relations by tackling prejudice, promoting mutual understanding and celebrating the diversity of people and cultures in Kendal;
  • Encouraging active citizenship and facilitating greater participation and inclusion through community action and engagement in a wide range of activities;
  • Empowering Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) people and other marginalised groups and communities living in Kendal by highlighting their issues as well as contributions to the local economy and culture;
  • Providing space for information stalls, food, workshops and performances.

How you can help?

  • Join the organising group;
  • Volunteer with us in organising and delivery of the Festival;
  • Sponsor a stall or donate items for raffle prizes;
  • Book a stall for your organisation to promote your work and services;
  • Help in raising funds;
  • Promote the aims and objectives of the Festival through social media and other communication channels.

Kendal Unity Festival Outcomes

The outcomes will include the following:

  • Increased confidence and trust among participant groups to work more collaboratively for achievement of shared objectives;
  • Greater awareness and understanding about the issues affecting minority or marginalised groups;
  • Strengthening solidarity and cooperation in communities through building sustainable voluntary and community networks;
  • Promotion of Kendal as a welcoming place for all who want to live, work, study, visit or conduct business in the Town.

Background

AWAZ has been working in partnership with local organisations and groups in Kendal for many years and they are keen to bring the positive model of the Unity Festival to Kendal, building on the proven success of the similar Unity Festivals in Carlisle in 2016 and 2017; For further details please visit https://equalitycumbria.org/awaz-cumbria/carlisle-unity-festival  Please read News:  https://goo.gl/eT3FXe  and watch Video: https://goo.gl/3cbSV9  or see photos at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/davidambridge/sets/72157683916752130 .

Recognising the community resilience and unity demonstrated in Kendal and the surrounding areas following the December 2015 floods, the South Lakeland Equality and Diversity Partnership entrusted AWAZ Cumbria to lead on organising Kendal Unity Festival by working in partnership with local groups and organisations.

The first group of Syrian refugees through the Vulnerable People Resettlement scheme will have arrived in Kendal in the spring 2018. One of the aims of the day will be to welcome and introduce these families to wider community networks in Kendal and support them in their social integration locally.

If you have any questions, comments/suggestions or need further information, please contact;

Aftab Khan – Development Officer, AWAZ Cumbria; Coordinator, Kendal Unity Festival

E-mail: Aftab@awaz.info     Tel: 01228-511115, 07530193935