Bristol Refugee Festival 

Article by:  
Matthew Rogers 
Marketing & Communications Officer | ACH Bristol 
Bristol Refugee Festival is gearing up for an exciting programme of events this June/July. 
Formerly Bristol Refugee Week, in line with the national initiative, last year it was decided for a number of reason to run a month long programme. “This worked really well, allowing for a bigger variety of events and a wider reach” explains Jules Olsen, the Festival coordinator “so we have decided to continue and expand on this model and as the ethos is about celebrating the contribution refugees make to Bristol, we decided to rename it as a Festival. 
This year the activities will run from 19th June – 16th July. The Festival will begin at the same time as National Refugee Week, but will continue through until mid-July to accommodate a varied citywide programme. 
The Theme this year will be ‘Our Shared Future’ as we celebrate all the communities that make up our culturally rich and diverse city and consider how we can integrate settled and incoming communities still further to build on this legacy. 
There will be something for everyone from talks, films, exhibitions, music showcases, fundraisers, school projects, and of course the annual ‘Celebrating Sanctuary’ event in Queen Square on Sun 9th July. 
The launch event will take place on Mon 19th June @ The Arnolfini. This event will centre around creative writing and artwork, music and spoken word produced by refugees and asylum seekers in Bristol. 
Details of this and all the events can be found on the Bristol Refugee Festival website and Facebook page. As part of the Festival, Ashley Community Housing are running a Bristol-Bath Cycle Ride. This will take place on Monday 10th July from 1pm-6pm. 
We’re looking for volunteers to accompany groups of tenants on the ride, which will follow the cycle path from Bristol to Bath via Warmley and Bitton.  
Riders will travel back to Bristol by train, with cycles being returned by van. We are also seeking a volunteer to provide and/or drive this van. 
If you’d like to volunteer go to our Neighbourly page to sign up. If you'd simply like to take part, contact Rachel Sharp. 
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