Bumper sum raised at Bromsgrove and Redditch refugee fundraising gig - The Redditch Standard

Bumper sum raised at Bromsgrove and Redditch refugee fundraising gig

Redditch Editorial 27th Feb, 2017 Updated: 6th Mar, 2017   0

A FUND raising concert held by local volunteer group ‘Bromsgrove and Redditch Welcome Refugees’ (BRWR) last week raised over £2,000 to support their efforts.

The ‘Gimme Shelter’ gig, held at Artrix in Bromsgrove, was attended by 170 people with cash raised going to help support refugees displaced by war and persecution, some of whom are living in Redditch.

BRWR are supporting the Redditch Syrian community to integrate into local life, offering English lessons, a craft club and volunteering opportunities, advice and friendship.

The group also arranges monthly collections of essential supplies to send to refugee camps in France, Serbia, Greece and Lebanon through the Malvern-based charity ‘People In Motion’.

The group received £500 funding from Bromsgrove District Council for the concert and has also recently received £1,000 funding through the County Council’s Divisional Funds from Redditch’s County Councillor Graham Vickery.

The Gimme Shelter concert was led by Rubery poet ‘Spoz (Giovanni Esposito) and the crowd was roused by Bromsgrove’s Town Crier Kevin Ward.

The first delight of the evening was the warm ambience of Abi Budgen and Dan Wilkins, performing a mix of peace and civil rights movement songs on an eclectic mix of instruments, including the West African kora.

Globetrotting acoustic duo Carmina enlivened the crowd with their award winning Celtic crossover of folk, jazz, woodwind and virtuoso guitar.

Blues guitarist Jack Blackman provided his exquisite slide guitar to bring the first half to an end. With the beautiful voice of Claire Boswell offering a Woodstock generation sound to the beginning of the second half.

The second half of the gig was punctuated by the percussive sounds of Birmingham drumming outfit Oya Batucada Samba, drawing on the African slave trade roots of samba music.

The concert culminated in the big extravaganza of performing ‘All You Need Is Love’, with audience participation.

The audience was also able to take-away bottled apple juice ‘RefuJuice’ made as a collaboration between Syrian refugees, BRWR and Pershore College.

Alistair Waugh of BRWR said: “We really want to thank people for all their support. Although fundraising is important for any group, the concert was also about raising awareness. Above all, the event was a reminder about being human, feeling love, and that people have always migrated. Our music reflects that. Whether that’s Irish folk, American freedom songs, reggae or samba rhythms.”

For more information about BRWR visit: www.brwr.uk or email [email protected]

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