Think Africa. No not animals and safaris, but the people, the diversity, the culture. Think of the delicious food, the myriad of languages, the eccentric sense of style, the lively dancing, the richness of its history, the beauty of its people and the vibrancy of the culture. This is what Africa Week is about, this is what Africa week showcases.
Africa Week 2017 at UWE Bristol is a programme of events which brings together and showcases different aspects of African literature, sports, diversity and culture. It displays the best that Africa has to offer while bringing together different themes which challenge, explore and celebrate the heritage, diversity and progress made by Africans and the University.
This year’s programme is taking place between March 27th and March 31st 2017, starting with a pre-launch collaborative event featuring an exhibition by Lubaina Himid and a host of other activities on the 23rd at Spike Island.
The Africa week will officially launch with a charity football match between team Africa and team Rest of the World (ROW) on the 27th of March 2017. This is taking place at the Almondsbury Sports and Social Club and will feature both men’s football and women’s football matches.
There will be a film screening of the movie ‘A United Kingdom’ on March 28th 2017 and an adaptation of an African play “Child Internationale” a play written by globally renowned Author, Playwright and Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka.
On the 29th, there will be an Educational Forum with the overarching theme on Cultural Identity. The day will also feature talks by UWE staff on students on different Africa initiatives at UWE as well as with workshops led by prominent employers such as GE. There will also be a panel discussion on the topic ‘Does your hair matter?’.
The 30th of March is all about mental health. Is mental health the next big challenge in Africa? This event will feature speakers from a range of medical, health, academic and charity backgrounds. There would be an opportunity to share ideas as well as we would like you to be a part of the discussion!
Last, but certainly not least, the Africa week will conclude with the Cultural Showcase and Gala night. This is the final event of the Africa Week 2017 programme and is a night of flair, flamboyance, fun and food. Definitely not one to be missed!
Whether or not you are conversant with African culture or the African experience, this programme of events is a learning opportunity, a chance to create awareness and an opportunity to see beyond the negative stereotypes plaguing the continent.
By Ifeatu Agbu