Refugee Week Creative Commissions

We’re offering one-off commissions for refugee artists/collectives or organisations running creative groups with refugees and people seeking asylum for a week long programme of activities taking place over Refugee Week 2021 (15-21 June).  Our theme for the week is “Imagining Sanctuary”, inspired by our Lewisham’s bid to become a Borough of Sanctuary.

We would like to commission 6 artists/art collectives with experience of forced migration to each develop and lead one workshop, performance or other interactive event. Here are some examples, but we are open to creative ideas:

  • Seminars/workshops on refugee issues 
  • Music performances
  • Dance classes 
  • Storytelling and poetry performances
  • Short films
  • Interactive activities

They can be aimed at children of different ages, adults or families. Events should have an interactive component and be inclusive, helping encourage community conversation centred on Lewisham as a Borough of Sanctuary. They can be online or in person. 

Key dates: Events will take place in Lewisham over Refugee Week, 15th-21st June. Your proposed event  should be 1-2 hours in length or could be a series of shorter events. 

Fee/expenses up to: £250

About Refugee Week events:

Refugee Week is a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary. CWB, in partnership with Refugee Cafe and other local organisations, will be running a week of performances, art exhibitions, cooking demos, storytelling and conversation. Our final celebration event on 19th June will be a day of market stalls and live music at Beckenham Mansion. 

We are looking for artists/art collectives to:

  • Lead in the planning, delivery and short evaluation of performance/event/workshop.
  • Create safe, supportive, dynamic and fun environments where participants are able to participate and express themselves to the fullest.
  • Inspire participants’ engagement and help them to develop their own creativity.
  • Help ensure safeguarding, health and safety, dignity and respect, and equal opportunities.
  • You should have experience in your art form (music/drama/dance/etc) and experience of planning, leading and evaluating events/workshops.

About us

Create Without Borders (CWB) promotes and celebrates the work of creatives with lived experience of forced migration. We do this by collaboratively creating digital and physical spaces that showcase work, facilitate partnership working, create paid opportunities and engage the local community. We use the term creative to include visual artists, musicians, filmmakers, comedians, chefs and more. We are a small team of volunteers. Most of us live in Lewisham but due to current restrictions we usually meet remotely.

How to apply:

We want to make this process as accessible as possible and recognise you might need support with the role. Feel free to call or email us for a chat if you want to ask any questions before applying. Send your applications to the email below, or contact us there or on social media if you need more information: 

Send us a short cover letter or video up to 2 minutes including: 

  1. A description of your proposed event
  2. Details of your experience in doing this type of work as an artist 
  3. Details of your experience in planning, leading and evaluating events like this 

Please also include any links to your creative work, and complete the questions below:

  1. Your name and contact details 
  2. The title of your proposed event
  3. A short description of the proposed event 
  4. If the event will be online or in person (so we will know if in-person space is needed) 
  5. Age ranges and ideal number of participants  
  6. Your preferred date in the week of 15th-19th June 

The deadline for applications is midday on Monday 10th May 2021. The selection process will involve a short online interview via Zoom.

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