DCSIMG

Scores celebrate diversity and equality at event

Alison Lapper MBE (front) who opened the event with organiser Penny Joseph left and Saidou and Dianna Saine from the Big Smile charity

Alison Lapper MBE (front) who opened the event with organiser Penny Joseph left and Saidou and Dianna Saine from the Big Smile charity

CELEBRATING diversity was top of the agenda at a special event held at the Shoreham Centre in Pond Road, Shoreham.

The fifth annual International Neighbours Festival aimed to promote cultural and physical diversity in the community, breaking down barriers and celebrating oneness.

The event was opened by the organisation’s patron, artist Alison Lapper, who made a speech and got the festivities started.

There were on-stage performances with music, flamenco dancing and a samba band, and lots of delicious international food to try.

There were a number of stalls with wares from all over the world, some including Africa, India and China.

“It was a great success,” said chairman Penny Joseph.

“We thoroughly enjoyed it and we had very good feedback about the event.

“It was a lovely day.”

Penny said the organisation itself had begun about six years ago when a group of volunteers with a passion for multiculturalism and bringing people together met and decided to form a group and call themselves the International Neighbours.

The group grew from there and this year Penny estimates that between 200 and 300 people attended the event.

There were a number of fundraising activities to help cover the costs of the day, including a tombola which raised a total of £200.

Penny said her passion for equality had started as a young teenager, during the Apartheid era, when she chose to boycott South African goods and encouraged her friends to do the same.

“I believe in equality for all regardless of difference,” she said.

Sussex Police sponsored this year’s event.

 

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