International Women’s Day Derby 2014

20140301-000020.jpgIn countries as varied as Afghanistan, Vietnam, Armenia, Cambodia, Cuba, Madagascar, Russia and Zambia to name a few, International Women’s Day is celebrated as a national holiday. In China, Nepal and Macedonia it’s a public holiday for women only. Now there’s an idea!

In Britain it does not have the same level of state backing or publicity, even though it’s recognised by the United Nations. For those who aren’t familiar with Women’s Day, it’s to celebrate, respect and appreciate women and their contributions to the world and the local area.

It’s a day to acknowledge women’s economic, political, and social achievements; a time for women to gather, share experiences, ideas and creativity, to feel inspired, empowered and supported in our lives.

Derby has a fine history/herstory of celebrating International Women’s Day in style. For years, there were gatherings at the Women’s Centre, but it has now grown large enough that last year the celebration took over the new Council House building and more than 600 people attended. The feedback was extremely positive, due, we suspect, to the great work of everyone involved in making it happen, most of whom were volunteers.

This year, on Saturday 8 March, the International Women’s Day festival will take place at the Darwin Suite of the Assembly Rooms from 10:00 till 4:00, where there will be workshops, stalls, a Red Tent, information, food, live entertainment and maybe a surprise or two… Free admission. All ages and genders welcome.

This year’s theme is ‘Generations’: a chance to appreciate the older women who came before and the younger women who are active now, to encourage dialogue, sharing and appreciation of what each generation has done, is doing and how together we can continue to push for quality and equality in women’s lives in Derby and the world.

If you’d like to volunteer to support the organisers and help the event run smoothly on the day, please contact Women’s Day Derby. Details below.

Later in the evening there will be an opportunity to celebrate, honour and recognise the Inspirational Women of Derby at an awards ceremony at Holiday Inn Riverlights, from 7:30 till 12:00 midnight. Formal dress. Tickets are £10-12, including canapés and entertainment, available at the daytime event and from Vox Feminarum beforehand. Contact details below.

Citizens’ Eye Derby caught up with Vanessa Boon and Sonya Robotham, respective chair and vice chair of the organising group for IWD Derby, to find out what’s in store for participants this year. Watch the video to find out…

We are impressed with the diversity of exciting, inspiring, political and fun activities available for everyone. Adi and Charmaine from Citizens’ Eye will be there to capture the variety of activities, the atmosphere and the experiences and reactions of participants to the festival.

Come and share your thoughts about the day with us.

For more information, go to…

Twitter: @WomensDayDerby

For tickets and to vote for the Inspirational Women of the Year awards, please contact Vox Feminarum at…

Phone: 07779 560284

Derby Festé 2013: celebrating diverse communities through music, street theatre and dance.

The Citizens’ Eye Derby team were invited to film aspects of  Festé 2013. Festé is an international arts festival that takes place in Derby. It brings internationally recognised artists to the streets of Derby in September each year.

Festé is organised by a consortium of four local arts providers in the city; Derby Quad, DEDA, Derby Live and Derby Theatre. It is funded by Without Walls, a national street arts consortium funded by the Arts Council.

Alex Rock from Quad explains what Festé is and why it’s important for the people and diverse communities of Derby.

Local arts groups have the opportunity to share the billing too. Our team spent time following two local community dance groups who were involved in Festé; Hoverla, a Ukrainian dance ensemble, and Surtal Arts, a South Asian Arts dance development agency. We wanted to understand how and why they were involved, and what being involved in Festé means to Hoverla and Surtal Arts, and members of the Ukrainian and South Asian Arts communities.

For more information about Derby Festé visit