For S.O.P.H.I.E – the GOMK charity book

A wonderful side effect from my involvement in the Rochester Literature Festival was being asked by one of our exhibiting artists, Richard Jeferies, to write for his charity book, Goth on my Keyboard.

photo (67)

The Goth character has an adoring public on Facebook and beyond, and is now using her celebrity to publicise a good cause close to home. Myself and fellow writer, Alison Eley, have responded to Richard’s brilliant drawings and character in this book, and Richard himself also adds emotive words to his images, as well as deliver the short and sweet cartoons that are GOMK’s usual platform. It’s a true life mix of humour and poignancy and frankly, well worth your time to read it. I’m thrilled and honoured to be a part of it.

Most of us are free to express ourselves in any way we see fit, whether through our choice of music, art, or the way we dress. Sadly, even these days, there are those who seek to destroy anything they don’t understand, or like, or is different, and Sophie Lancaster paid the worst possible price for this.

gomkimage

The book is  now published and all the proceeds go to the S.O.P.H.I.E Lancaster Foundation, a charity set up to help fight hate crimes, following the horrifying attack that led to her death. Kicked to death for looking different. In the 21st century, in a civilised, mainly tolerant society, how can this happen? The book, including VAT, costs just £2.39. Please buy it by downloading from the link, and aid this cause in the following aims:

  • To create a lasting legacy to Sophie.
  • To provide educational group-works that will challenge the prejudice and intolerance towards people from alternative subcultures.
  • To campaign to have the UK Hate Crime legislation extended to include people from alternative subcultures or Lifestyle and Dress.

To find out more about the S.O.P.H.I.E Lancaster Foundation, visit the website here.

Stamp Out Prejudice, Intolerance and Hatred Everywhere. Thank you.

Advertisements

But will it be on the jelly box?

One of the most exciting programmes to hit Medway and Swale in recent times (quite a statement when you consider how much is going on) is Creative People and Places: Swale and Medway, a project determined to let local people shape their arts provision and give them the opportunity of taking part in activities they wouldn’t normally think were for them. Check out the awesome video and read on …

Great news then, that the first round of funding – the Small Experiment applications of up to £2000 – will open on June 17th. This is not your traditional project funding, mind, so you must be very clear about what you want to test and why, and how it will inspire a broader range of involvement from, and collaboration with, local residents and community and voluntary groups.

To find our more about the application process and eligibility, sign up at CreativePeoplePlace.info (scroll down to add your details, and to nominate a community catalyst or three) and drop in to one of the two informal events taking place this month, so you can meet new Creative Enabler and Programme Director, Steph Fuller, plus some more of the team.

Medway: Tuesday, June 18th from 7pm – 9pm at Gillingham Library, High St. ME7 1BG

Swale: Wednesday, June 26th from 7pm -9pm at Pulse Café, 29 Park Road, Sittingbourne. ME10 1DR

No booking required is required and some refreshments will be available.

If you can’t make the above dates, some one-to-one sessions with Steph will be available across Swale and Medway until at least mid-July. Check her diary and email to say “Hello, how lovely it will be to meet you.”

Creative People and Places: Swale and Medway was awarded funding by the Arts Council, after both areas were identified as having low arts engagement within their communities. It’s an action research programme aiming to engage and re-imagine the arts as a valued and integral part of local people’s everyday life.

So, if you’re a local resident, part of an arts organisation or a member of a community or voluntary group and have the motivation to make interesting things happen locally, they want to hear from you.