We spent a lovely Sunday in the company of experimental musicians and performers, at Gwyl Nawr Festival, held at Volcano Theatre on November 20th.
The day-long event attracted several hundred people over the course of the day and included musical performances as well as film screenings. Some performers were local to South Wales and others were from further afield, making the event a truly fascinating mix of techniques and approaches, some of which we had never seen, heard or thought of before!
The positive and optimistic name of the event, ‘Gwyl Nawr’, is Welsh for ‘Now Festival’. The event’s title is particularly fitting for us and we were very excited to be approached by the organisers, Rhodri, Jenn, Dan and Rose, who wished to support Swansea City of Sanctuary. When developing a culture of welcome and hospitality for those seeking safety from war and persecution, we try to focus on the future wherever possible. As an organisation, we don’t ask for the back stories or the reasons the people we work with are here in Swansea. We simply accept that individuals and families have arrived, and focus on what we can do, as a movement, to support people to feel welcome and valued as a part of Swansea’s community from now on. It’s very much a forward-looking project, allowing people to see hope where there often hasn’t been much hope before.
We are delighted to share with you that the Gwyl Nawr festival raised in excess of £800 for Swansea City of Sanctuary. This money will make a huge difference people seeking sanctuary in Swansea, many of whom survive on a maximum of £5.28 a day. This donation will allow Swansea City of Sanctuary to reimburse expenses to people seeking sanctuary when attending educational or other recreational activities, aiding integration and welcome into their new community.
We would once again like to express our gratitude to the organisers, performers and audience members at Gwyl Nawr for their generosity and for approaching our organisation. If you didn’t manage to attend, check out the fabulous photos taken by Daryl Feehely.