My Name is Rena and on the 1st Jan 2019 I successfully brought a community of participants to represent the London Borough of Hackney at the New Year's day parade depicting the travel and arrival of the “Windrush community of the Caribbean”. The project was delivered on time and in budget, it was a landmark achievement for the LB of Hackney who had been absent from the parade for some years.
It was important for the group who participated in the New Year's Day parade to continue the celebration, promotion and education of the Windrush generation and their contribution to the UK. The working group (who are all professionals in their own right) have now formed a strong working bond and have set targets in order to achieve the aim of preserving the contribution of the Windrush population and their diaspora’s contribution to the UK.
Target 1 – to present the Windrush parade at 3 street festivals/carnivals:- Leyton carnival on the 7th July, Acton carnival 13th July and Hackney carnival 8th September.
Target 2 – to create a Windrush educational 2020 calendar using the still pictures from the New Year’s Day parade, highlighting key dates throughout the months of significant contributions and achievements of the Windrush population.
Target 3 – to archive the footage and still pictures of the New Years Day Parade preserved in the LB Hackney Archives.
The targets/events will lead up to, be in line with and surpass the National Windrush day 22nd June.
The outcomes of our participation in the events are to attract wider participation from community members and the opportunity for those members to learn about the contribution of the Windrush generation through research and education. Participants will be tasked with researching the dress code of the Windrush Era in order to create their costume. Participants will be sent useful internet links in relation to footage of the Windrush population and the genres of music popular amongst the Caribbean people at the time.
The visual depiction of the Windrush generation within the carnivals will act as live art and education to the spectators who may not be aware of the contribution of the Windrush Population, as well as a reminder of the Windrush arrival.
Footage and written accounts of the processions will be used for social media to act as a way of reaching wider audiences with the purpose to educate and celebrate.
Spectators, especially those from and connected to the Caribbean diaspora, will feel a sense of pride when viewing the Windrush themed participants.
The outcomes of the production of the calendar will be
1. To educate the co-creators of the calendar, as each co-creator will research significant dates of Windrush achievements for each of the 12 months. These key dates will be printed within the calendar.
2. The calendar will act as an educational tool to the wider public which can be used in schools, pupil referral units, further educational and Higher Education provisions, supporting their curricula.
The calendar can act as an educational tool within community homes for the elderly and can also be used as part of memory boxes for therapeutic interactions. Also for social service providers for young people who are not in education, employment or training as a way of fostering positive role modelling through historical Windrush achievements.
Where are we now?
Planning has already started for participation in the carnivals and the production of the calendar.
I have been successful in attracting LB Hackney grants to participate in the annual Hackney carnival for over 18 years and I am in-line of obtaining £1000 from LB Hackney cultural department this year.
I have been awarded £400 from the LB Hackney Windrush grant.
We have negotiated a printing deal through the LB Hackney printing team who can produce promotional fliers and the Calendar.
I will be seeking support from local and national bodies such as Tesco, Wilko, Santander and The Arts Council.
Rena Kydd-Williams (R Consultancy, who is an approved supplier to LB Hackney for Carnival Arts) and Beverley Reece (a qualified social worker) are the leads for this project.
What would we like from you?
We are seeking £3000 in Global crowdfunding to contribute towards the logistics, period costume, volunteer expenses, float, float decoration, music and our transportation to participate in Leyton, Acton and Hackney Carnivals in 2019. We are also seeking funds to create, print and distribute the educational calendar.