I have been offered a space and time as part of a large performing arts festival in London. The festival takes place in the underground vaults beneath Waterloo Station and runs from the end of January to the middle of March. Bringing performers, comedians and artists from around the world the festival is one of the largest and longest Fringe Theatre Festivals in the UK and is growing in stature every year. (www.vaultfestival.com)
2017 will see a significant collaboration between the Vault Festival team and Crew for Calais (the charity through which i volunteered in France in 2016)
Ostensibly, we are collaborating with them as their selected charity. For us it is a way of raising funds and awareness of our charity within the Performing Arts Industry, and amongst the wider public. We hope to attract more potential volunteers from the theatre industry to donate their valuable skills and experience to help refugees and assylum seekers in the UK and abroad, as well as the funds to support this work financially. It’s our opportunity to scale up our fundraising and outreach work by working with an exciting partner in the UK capital.
We are planning to run a hackathon around refugee issues as part of the fetsival.
A half-day event aimed at blowing the conversation around UK refugee and asylum processes wide open. We want to think big and small; we want to find new methods of helping and supporting refugees in the UK and further afield; we want to understand more about the landscape of refugee service provision; we want to learn from others already working in new and exciting ways with refugee communities.
This hackathon exists to give Vault festival audience members, creative professionals and those working in refugee support services a chance to come together and creatively address some of the challenges faced by those seeking asylum in the UK and Europe.
So often we feel like we are individually powerless to improve their opportunities available to refugees, or we cannot stand up to the weight of public and government opinion against us. This is an opportunity to prove that this is not the case. That every single person can do something to help improve the opportunities for refugees within their own communities and beyond. A positive space for thinking how we can make positive change.
A whole afternoon event, the alchemy of it will be designed to call all there into action, during which new working methods will be hacked.
Right now i’m looking for help and support from anyone in the ER community who might have experience of, or interest in participatingman event like this. We’re at the start of the process where we approach people and orgs that are already doing work on Positive change. As the OpenCare community has brought so many interesting and positive of refugee support and welfare stories to light i hope to find some stories to share from within the community.
The starting point is to see who might be interested in sharing some tips and suggestions about the event.
I would also be keen to hear any expressions of interest from participants.