CU getting ready for Hay

Along with my Concern Universal colleague Rachael, and some very welcome volunteers, I’m happily making plans for this year’s Hay Festival. We always look forward to it – and the chance to see our local supporters and meet those of you who don’t know and love us yet. This year, we’ve got loads of great stuff planned particularly for young Hay Fever goers. Hampton Dene School, who have been providing tremendous support for the last three years, are super happy about having the chance to perform their Carnival Spectacular at Hay Fever. Inspired by the stories of children we work with alongside our local partner CPD in Brazil, the musical tells the story of a child worker who is a budding musician, and his participation in the annual carnival. Our fab volunteers Emily and Jess are busy with rehearsals at the school and we think that the performance promises to be the most uplifting and joyous hour that £2 can buy!

This week, I’m visiting 5 local schools with Angela Brightling, who leads the Concern Universal team in Brazil. It’s been a real pleasure to hear young people’s thoughts and responses to our workshops on human rights in Latin America. When asked what impressions they would take, one group of young people wrote “Things are moving on, people coming together – (they are) making a difference”. We’ll be taking these workshops to Hay on Thursday 26th and Friday 27th May. I’m looking forward to hearing what young visitors to Hay think about the how we can encourage greater respect for children’s rights across the world.

I’ve given my colleague James in the Programme team the task of bring back some good examples of African ingenuity from his trip to Ghana this week. We’re taking over the ‘Make and Take’ area of Hay Fever on June 1 & 2 with the theme – ‘Don’t refuse, re-use’ so I’m priming everyone for ideas. It’s been really fascinating hearing from other countries where we work, about how people are re-using everyday objects for a more sustainable world.


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