Refugee Festival Scotland starts with music and sunshine

On #WorldRefugeeDay on June 20, a sunny St Enoch Square was bustling with people celebrating the start of #RefugeeFestScot.

Musicans in Exile played music and got audience members to participate with clapping and playing drums.

People held up welcome placards in multiple languages – Arabic, Russian, Kurdish, Pashto, French and Farsi, amongst others – to show solidarity and friendship with people who have experienced forced migration.

Manaf Halbouni’s installation Rubble Theatre attracted many curious looks. It will be open to the public in St Enoch Square until June 27. Check out the full programme for #RefugeeFestScot here.

Making Home

Today marks one week until the Launch Day of Refugee Festival Scotland 2019!

20th June marks World Refugee Day, so we will stand in solidarity with protests and celebrations across the globe in making our voices heard for refugees across the world.

Yesterday, the news that Serco is to evict 30 destitute people per week from their homes for the next 4 months broke, and it has shaken us. Despite protests and ongoing legal challenges, the housing provider and the Home Office are charging ahead with their cruel and inhumane lock-change policy, which has caused outrage and anger across the sector, and confusion and fear among refugee and asylum seeking communities.

The theme of this year’s festival is “Making Art, Making Home” – a theme which stemmed from Serco’s initial attempts to evict 300 people last summer. We call on the people of Glasgow, of Scotland, to come together and create a sense of home for those who are being forced from theirs. Refugee Festival Scotland provides an opportunity for people to come together who wouldn’t otherwise have met, to build bonds and remember that there is more that unites us than divides us. A chance to celebrate what makes us human, and to embrace each other’s talents and abilities. The show will go on, and we will make HOME louder and bigger than ever.

Everyone has a right to a home and the right to feel at home, safe, welcome and part of a community. In a hostile environment, home can be built on memories and hope, with the help of new neighbours and friends.

Making home shouldn’t have to be a defiant act, but if it has to be, it will be.

 

Join us at St Enoch Square on World Refugee Day – 20th June, and help us to make home for people here in Scotland:

12.00 – 12.10

Join us in a display of solidarity, friendship and welcome

12.10 – 12.30

Hear from inspiring artists and activists Pinar Aksu, Amal Azzudin, Sabir Zazai and Manaf Halbouni

12.30 – 13.30

Drumming with Musicians in Exile, followed by Arabic, Persian and Kurdish music

This event is outdoors and wheelchair accessible.

Coming Very Soon – Refugee Festival Scotland 2019!

May is nearly upon us and, with that, the countdown to Refugee Festival Scotland 2019 really begins!

We’ve been busy recruiting ambassadors and volunteers, liaising with community groups, organising events, planning, planning, planning and soon we’ll be ready to release this year’s programme and artwork. The festival will take place 20-30 June across Scotland, with loads of exciting events for everyone to enjoy and learn from. We can’t wait to tell you everything that we have planned – watch this space!

In the meantime, look back at this blog written by Naina Bhardwaj from last year’s performance of “Where are you really from?”, an inspiring and moving piece by our friends at World Spirit Theatre. You can catch them at the Southside Fringe Festival on 18th May for a pre-festival warm up!

Continue reading “Coming Very Soon – Refugee Festival Scotland 2019!”

Submissions for Refugee Festival Scotland 2019 are now closed!

Submissions are now closed and we are busy organising all the wonderful entries for this year’s Refugee Festival Scotland.

From community food events to readings, film screenings, performances and sports activities for children and adults – there is something for everyone! Join us at venues all across Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee and wider Scotland. Everyone is invited!

The Festival begins on World Refugee Day – Thursday 20 June – and will run until Sunday 30 June 2019. The full programme is going to be announced in May. Watch this space!

26 days to get your submissions in for Refugee Festival Scotland 2019!

In just 26 days, submissions will close for Refugee Festival Scotland 2019!

The theme of this year’s festival is “Making Art, Making Home” – but that doesn’t mean you necessarily have to think of something artistic to get involved. A few years ago, we caught up with players at Glasgow Afghan United – who displayed the power of football in bringing people together and “making home”. They do call it “the beautiful game” after all…and that nickname alone has inspired films, musicals and songs about the joy and camaraderie it generates.

Perhaps your team wants to hold an event for Refugee Festival Scotland? Be it a game, an exhibition, a celebration, a screening of a film about the power of sport in bringing communities together…whatever you come up with, find out more about how to apply for our Open Programme and Small Grants Scheme here, and apply by March 17th!

We can’t wait to hear your ideas!

Continue reading “26 days to get your submissions in for Refugee Festival Scotland 2019!”