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Celebrate and Motivate was SIFA Fireside’s first ever Black History Month event and was certainly one of our highlights of 2023.

The afternoon was a true collaborative effort, with input and contributions from staff, volunteers, clients and members of the community. Over 30 clients attended the event, joining around 20 members of SIFA Fireside staff and volunteers, as we enjoyed guest speakers, musicians, poets and even some dancing in a celebration of the people that make up our community.

 

The event featured Don Campbell, Founder and Director of The Forgotten Generations, who spoke about his time in the armed forces and the valuable contributions made to the UK by the Windrush Generation. Angel, a former client of SIFA Fireside and recognised figure around Birmingham also discussed her experiences facing homelessness and how she has always found a way to support others, regardless of her own situation.

 

 

 

 

The arts were also celebrated as Omar the street poet performed a stirring spoken word piece about the importance of family and honouring the culture and traditions of where you come from. Talvin, who regularly attends SIFA Fireside’s music therapy and jam sessions performed two songs for the audience in attendance; one a cover and the other an original composition, before the afternoon relaxed into an impromptu dance and open-mic session which got all of the staff and clients on their feet.

 

Last but my no means least, our very own Joy and Kyle cooked up a storm in the kitchen, all whilst enjoying the show, entertaining the clients and even taking to the mic at one point. Alongside rice and peas, we were treated to 50 dumplings and 50 festivals, which were kindly donated to us by Blue Marlin and 100 patties which came courtesy of Cleone Foods.

Thank you to everyone who made the event such a memorable one. Same again next year?

Robb Sheppard

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