Needless to say, the last 18 months or so have been a long slog for us all — as a community organisation we’ve done our best to stay connected, but try as we might, most would agree that nothing quite replaces being together in a physical space.
Last Saturday, September the 11th, we hosted our first face-to-face event after being apart for nearly two years. Almost 100 people gathered in the grounds at Kensington Palace for our Great Get Together, a UK movement inspired by the murder of the late MP Jo Cox who is famed for the quote: “We have far more in common than that which divides us”. The Great Get Together is usually hosted in June, but we decided to reschedule in the hope of less social distancing and better weather….and thankfully, the sun shone for us!
On a day synonymous with hate, with a community that continues to grieve from tragedy– we came together in hope, solidarity and love. After a long year of being apart, of connecting virtually over Zoom, it was a magnificent day to come together and connect in person.
Thank you for a brilliant day! Everyone in the palace loved it — the whole vibe was positivity! Kim Klug, Kensington Palace
We were lucky enough to host the event at the beautiful Kensington Palace and welcomed along a number of our community partners to deliver a variety of fun activities for all who came. From a drama workshop with SPID Theatre Company to specimen investigation with the Natural History Museum, science activities via Imperial College to creating community art with 24 Hearts through to our ever-popular Human Library.
Although a vibrantly diverse area to be, Kensington is one of the most economically divided boroughs of the country, with poverty and extreme wealth living cheek by jowl. A huge part of what we do to counter this is host events that bring people together across boundaries to challenge stigma and prejudice, working to build greater empathy and understanding for one another.
The Human Library is one of these projects that enables us to truly bring people together beyond our usual bubbles. In short, people are Books and reading is a conversation. We hosted Book titles spanning Niqabi, Depression, Non-binary and Satanist to name a few — each demonstrating how we should never judge a Book by its cover, humanising people beyond what you could ever learn in reading an actual Book or indeed Tweet!
Thanks for organising such a fantastic day. I’m still buzzing from being called a Rock Star by the 8 year old twins, that made my day! Human Book: Satanist
Where else might you have an opportunity to ask all those burning questions you would usually feel uncomfortable to ask in your day-to-day life?
Here’s hoping that our ease out of lockdown continues, so we can host more and more of these wonderful events, not apart, but unified together.
Keep your eyes peeled on our future events here.