Lozells Faith & Food Festival
On Saturday, like hundreds of other residents from across Lozells and surrounding areas, I attended the Lozells Faith & Food Festival in Georges Park. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting many people at the festival due to the poor weather leading up to Saturday. I was amazed by the turn-out.
The festival was incredibly well attended by the young and old, of all faith and ethnic origins. It was a lovely atmosphere with many organisations, resident groups as well as community activists displaying and selling items in the large tent, young people and artists performing on stage in the main area with further items for exhibition and sale in a smaller tent next to a children’s fun fair. It was also great to see so many community organisations displaying and promoting their activities, like Near Neighbours Urban Church Fund who are in discussions with me in the above picture.
I have seen a clear shift in engagement and leadership from within faith leaders and institutions in the past year. During the unfortunate disturbances last summer, the leadership and unifying force of the faith leaders across the city was immense. Furthermore, with the cuts to public services and the voluntary sector, the faith sector is leading the fight-back by getting more involved in community activity than ever before.
In fact, the Lozells Methodist Community Centre, is the without doubt the Lozells Community Centre as many community campaigns and activity’s are launched, developed and implemented there. The fact that I am the 4square Mayor of the Lozells Methodist Community Centre has obviously nothing to do with me singling out LMCC for praise. LOL. (For the benefit of Mr Cameron: Laughing Out Loud).
I gave ‘Lozells boy’ Aftab Rahman a hand in promoting and distributing food at his stall. Aftab has wrote an incredible book around food playing a huge role in the development of Bangladeshi immigrants in Lozells and surrounding areas. For a copy of a book, please contact him.
I would like to put on record the community’s gratitude towards the organisers of the Lozells Faith & Food Festival and in particular Pall Singh (Lozells Project), Sister Helen Ryan & Sister Mary Hogarth (St Mary’s Convent), Matloob Hussain (Lozells Jamia Mosque), Rev Helen Jobling & Rajinder Rattu (Lozells Methodist Community Centre), Mr Singh (Wheeler St Temple), Mr Yawn (Hockley Buddhist Centre) and Rev Auntie Jemima MBE (St Silas & St Pauls Church).
For any further information regarding the activity of our faith leaders working in collaboration please visit the Lozells Project.