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Black History Month 2020: Events

By 1st October 2020October 23rd, 2020No Comments

Black History Month is an annual commemoration of the history, achievements and contributions of black people in the UK.

This year the impact of COVID-19 has meant many organisations across the South West will be marking Black History Month with virtual meet-ups and online events.

Below is a summary of some of the activities taking place across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire. This list will be updated as more events are added:

Bristol at the centre of Black History: Xavier Baker in conversation with Marvin Rees

Date: 1 October 2020
Venue: Blackboard Collaborate

Join UWE Bristol and Xavier Baker in conversation with Marvin Rees (Mayor of Bristol) as we discuss the history of Bristol and the slave trade, the story of the Colston statue, and how it made waves around the world.

Black Men Talk Health: Free, online workshop for BAME men

Date: 7 October 2020
Venue: Online event

Join Church of God Prophecy, Nilaari, Rethink Bristol and Community Access Support service for a free, online emotional wellbeing workshop for Black African and Asian Men. This workshop will explore emotional wellbeing and distress, and how stereotypes and recent current events may have had an impact on this. 

Sickle Cell Awareness Lunch and Learn 

Date: 12 October 2020
Venue: Please email to attend 

Led by the Sickle Cell Society and Anndeloris Chacon, a former Clinical Nurse Specialist for patients with Sickle Cell Anaemia in the BNSSG area. Find out more about the life limiting blood disorder that although can affect anyone, predominantly affects people from African and Caribbean backgrounds. Hear first-hand how the main symptoms of severe anaemia and painful sickle cell crisis impact upon people’s lives.

Bristol Bus Boycott and the legacy of UK Race Relations

Date: 14 October 2020
Venue: Blackboard Collaborate

Talk by Roger Griffith on the 1963 Bristol bus boycott, and the impact it had on forming the first Race Relations Act in the UK. Roger will tell the story of the long-lasting impact early Windrush era pioneers had on the city, and also the country as a whole.

Your City, Your Jobs

Date: 15 October 2020
Venue: Online event

Top local organisations who want to improve diversity within their workforces will be show-casing roles and sharing what it’s like to work with them. On the day they will be looking to help and support you with information from application stage to finding the perfect role for you.

Black Lives Matter – Reforming the Norm

Date: 17 October 2020
Venue: Online event

Panel members are; facilitator Rachel de Garang from the VIP, and special guests Elysse Lawrence and Donnell Asare who will be speaking their truth about how the BLM protests have affected them, what each has done as a result and looking ahead what in their view needs to happen for things to change. Donnell will also be sharing a powerful spoken word piece he composed in response to BLM. This will be followed by an open floor and opportunity for the audience to ask questions.

Black Lives Matter and the call for action

Date: 21 October 2020
Venue: Blackboard Collaborate

Join UWE Bristol for a panel discussion reflecting on the Black Lives Matter protests over the summer, and what it means for the future of the city of Bristol. What should happen next?

We Dey Here Long Time – An overview of the Black presence in Britain from 1300 – 2020

Date: 22 October 2020
Venue: South Gloucestershire Council Webinar – Microsoft Teams

An overview of the Black presence in Britain from 1300 – 2020. This webinar will be delivered by Dr Edson Burton.

Virtual Wellbeing Cafe: The Past as a Future Present

Date: 24 October 2020
Venue: Online event

Virtual Wellbeing Cafe organised by the North Somerset BME Network, is hosting a discussion on how our histories shape our present and infuence our futures. The discussion will be led with an introductory talk by Ian Noah, who will use the Sierra Leone history of his family to explore the repercussions of the past and how they continue to resonate today and be relevant to the future. Participants are invited to share their own experiences.

FOSPL Monthly Open Mic event

Date: 29 October 2020
Venue: Online event

Sheba Soul Ensemble and BATOM are partnering with Friends of St Paul’s Library for an open mic event. Tina Tamsho-Thomas, renowned poet and entertainer is the guest poet. Malcolm X Elders, will be sharing their poetry too. The Theme is Black Futures Matters.

Black* Artists on the Move

Date: 21 November 2020
Venue: Online event

Spend an evening with a celebrated performance poet, Lemn Sissay dramatically reads extracts from his acclaimed play ‘Something Dark’ and draws on the back story of his life to give us a deeper understanding of our own humanity.

Black History Month at Bristol Library

Date: October
Venue: Bristol Library or online 

Resource collections of fiction, non-fiction, films, and documentaries about Black history and Black experience. Their lists have a mixture of digital and physical resources. Read and watch online or use the click and collect service to borrow physical items.

Real Photography Company – Black History Month 202

Date: October – December
Venue: St Pauls Learning Centre – Glen’s Café

Bristol-based artist and photographer Garfield McKenzie has documented these pioneers as a way to pay respect and show admiration. The set of portraits in this exhibition make visible a generation of intrepid individuals, who left their homeland to make the journey to a new life. These elders paved the way for the generations of black British communities living in the UK today.  The Real Photography Company will also be doing Instagram Take Overs every weekend in October.

Further information from NHS Employers:

  • The official Black History Month UK listing – this website provides information on an extensive range of events taking place across the UK to entertain, inform and inspire.
  • NHS Confederation BME Leadership Network – this network was set up to work on the diversity and inclusion agenda to improve the representation of BME staff and raise their profile.
  • Resources to tackle racism and discrimination – NHS Employers has collated a range of useful resources which can be used to help aid conversations and to implement change.
  • Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) – since 2015 all NHS organisations have been required to demonstrate how they are addressing race equality issues in a range of staffing areas through the WRES
  • NEAS leaders pledge to act against racism by the book – senior managers across the North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) have pledged to raise the profile of race equality in the service and started by launching a book club with around two dozen titles on race and racism.
  • Campaign honours BAME contribution on NHS Birthday – the Florence Nightingale Foundation (FNF) has released a special collage of BAME nurses and midwives working on the frontline during COVID-19 to mark the 72nd birthday of the NHS..
  • NHS Chief Executive pays tribute to essential contribution of Windrush generation – the head of the NHS in England Sir Simon Stevens marked Windrush Day 2020 by committing the NHS to drive further improvements in race equality across the health service.
  • Black nurses and midwives instrumental in helping shape the NHS of today – the Chief Nursing Officer for England has previously shared the amazing achievements and notable milestones of black nurses and midwives over the past 70 years.
  • Time to speak up: some necessary words about racism – Tracie Jolliff, national head of inclusive leadership and system development at NHS England and NHS Improvement provides an overview of the impact of the Black Lives Matter movement and what this means for the NHS.

During October keep an eye on our website and social media for stories from Sirona celebrating #BlackHistoryMonth.