Derry Good Relations Week to start next week
Local groups and organisations in Derry will help deliver a positive message that ‘Change Starts With Us’ during Good Relations Week 2022.
Co-ordinated by Derry City and Strabane District Council in conjunction with the Community Relations Council, Good Relations Week 2022 will run from Tuesday 20 to Monday 26 September with groups and organisations across Derry City and Strabane District Council shining a light on how they are building a more sustainable and shared future.
The week long programme of workshops, lectures, panel discussions, feature talks, podcasts, film, music and dance performances, storytelling, and exhibitions will focus on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals to highlight the political, social, economic, and environmental challenges we face as a region. Events will address gender inequality, climate change and the environment, improving individual health and well-being, eradicating poverty, and hunger, and removing barriers to improved education.
They will also showcase the outstanding good relations efforts of local communities in delivering peace and prosperity to the region, as well as addressing everything from sectarianism and racism to shared spaces, peace-building and cultural diversity.
Looking ahead to Good Relations Week, Mayor of Derry and Strabane, Councillor Sandra Duffy, said it provided a platform for local groups to showcase some of the fantastic projects being delivered across the City and District. She said: “We have a rich and diverse cultural community here in Derry and Strabane and a network of organisations working side by side to bring those communities together. The theme this year focuses on the responsibility we all have to ensure that everyone feels welcome in our City and District, and the importance of inclusion and equality for all.
“Good Relations Week also offers the chance for our family of ethnic communities to share aspects of their culture, and I would really encourage local ethnic groups to engage with this year’s programme. I’m looking forward to taking part in this year’s events, and to celebrating the outstanding work that goes into changing attitudes and creating a safe and welcoming place where we can live and work together.”
Martin McDonald MBE, Chair of the Community Relations Council, said: “Good Relations Week 2022 will host hundreds of inspiring events that will deliver a positive message that ‘Change Starts with Us’ as we shine a light on local groups and organisations in their pursuit of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
“The programme of events will showcase the creativity and enthusiasm of local groups and organisations in their efforts to achieving a better and more sustainable future for us all. It will explore how these groups and organisation have made concerted efforts to bring communities together, regardless of background, culture, or heritage. It will shine a light on their efforts to tackle important issues such sectarianism, racism, and other forms of identity hatred and inequality, as well as addressing climate change, eradicating food poverty, and improving people’s mental health.
“We look forward to kicking off this very exciting programme of events and getting as many people as possible involved in Good Relations Week 2022.”
Jacqueline Irwin, Chief Executive of the Community Relations Council said: “The Community Relations Council is excited to host our annual showcase of cross community and multi-cultural arts, history, music and culture.
“We want to thank all of the local groups and organisations across the region who have helped us put together a dynamic programme of workshops, lectures, discussion panels, music and theatre performances, exhibitions, archive videos and lots more for people to enjoy.”
Good Relations Officer with Council, Pauline O’Neill, said: “Good Relations Week is all about inclusion so that’s why it’s so important that all our communities are represented throughout the week. We want to provide an arena for our many local groups to showcase their work, and to use this as an opportunity to raise awareness and engage with new audiences. It’s a fun way of inspiring and motivating people to get involved, learn from other cultures and try something new.”
Good Relations Week is supported by The Executive Office and contributes to delivering the Together: Building a United Community Strategy. For more information on the Good Relations Week 2022 programme of events visit www.derrystrabane.com/goodrelationsweek, goodrelationsweek.com or keep up to date on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #GRW22.