Black History Month
During Brunel’s 2018 Black History Month celebrations, the Student Success Project collaborated with the Union of Brunel Students to bring both students and staff from all backgrounds together to learn more about and to celebration of the achievements of African and Caribbean culture and heritage.
The Student Success Project Assistant was lead organiser of the film nights and the secondary organiser of Black Royalties. On Tuesday, 2nd October, the union held a Comedy Show featuring various Black stand-up comedians for a night of fun and laughter.
On Tuesday 9th, a Windrush Art Show was displayed in The Venue rom 11am- 3pm. It was followed by a discussion about the Windrush Generation and scandal led by Arthur Torrington CBE. In collaboration with Taste Kingdom a Food Fair was held on Thursday October 25th, foods from a range of African and Caribbean countries and islands were available after a £1 donation. All money raised from ticket sales went to a charity of the Black societies’ choice.
On the launch night of our Black History Month campaign we held a sold-out screening of ‘Bazodee’ in The Junction. Bazodee is set in Trinidad and Tobago with the island‘s culture of carnival and soca music displayed as prevalent themes throughout the film. The film starred Soca music star Machel Montano and represented the Indo-Caribbean community with its Bollywood musical style.
Over 70 students attended the film screening and were treated to Dominos pizza and soft drinks courtesy of Locos.
The second film night was a screening of film adaption of best-selling author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s novel ‘Half of A Yellow Sun’. This film followed the lives of twin sisters who are caught in the outbreak of the Nigerian Civil War.
Approximately 50 students attended the screening of Half of a Yellow Sun and were treated to food and drinks courtesy of Taste Kingdom.
The two film screenings represented the history, culture and experiences of Trinidadian, Tobagonian and Nigerian students. This works towards the Student Success Project’s focus areas of awareness of the cultural backgrounds of our students in order to understand our student body and to build on existing structures to increase meaningful interactions between staff and students by inspiring a community sense of ‘belonging’.
To close our successful and amazing Black History Month campaign, which was organised in collaboration with The Union, we held a talent showcase where students of African and Caribbean heritage performed various forms of art for an audience of 200 students and staff. The event was held in the Antonin Artaud building and was supported by Art@Brunel.
The showcase was developed through the collaboration of the Union of Brunel Students, African Caribbean Society, Brunel West Indian Society, Brunel Nigerian Society, Brunel Ghanaian Society and Brunel Somali Society. Together, a collection of talented performers showcased ‘Black Excellence’ through singing, dancing, acting and spoken word.
The issue of mental health in relation to black men, colourism within the community and the breaking down of gender stereotypes are just a few examples of topics that were covered throughout performances. The events performers were made up of Brunel students and Alumni, as well as, up and coming young artists from around London.
For more information please contact Jemmar.Samuels@brunel.ac.k or Abigail.Elliott@brunel.ac.uk