Positive Images Festival calling

The 22nd annual Positive Images Festival (PIF) in Coventry turned out to be a momentous one for all connected with the festival. On 2nd June 2016 it was announced that Positive Images Festival had won the prestigious Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service. This news was music for my ears.

We celebrate diversity, promote partnership working and community cohesion, showcase local talent and provide volunteering opportunities.

The 2016 Positive Images Festival, held from 11th to 30th June, attracted over 20,000 visitors this year! The amazing variety of events comprises: The Big Lunch; a Multicultural Book, Craft & Food Fair; a Community Information Fair; Trails celebrating the faith, literary and industrial heritage of our city; exhibitions and much more.

A monumental festival like Positive Images Festival requires a lot of planning, which we start in September each year.

On our database we have 200+ members, who are invited to planning meetings. I am always amazed at the resourcefulness of our members, whose input gives the festival a fresh look each year.

We have no funding of our own. Every year we apply for funding. Anyone who feels a strong urge to sponsor us is advised to get in touch by emailing colrsco@yahoo.co.uk

We are also looking for performers and volunteers. For us, Coventry University has been a good source of volunteers, whose contribution has been monumental.

According to me, the ingredients of a successful festival are: Planning, Publicity, Promotion and prolific Energy and Enthusiasm.

Perhaps, I should add good weather to the above list. Of late, our launch event, the Multicultural Book, Craft & Food Fair, held under covered stalls in the city centre has not been particularly fortunate in having sunny weather on the day.

What has made 2016 memorable for us?

*Right at the top has to be the comment of the Queen’s Deputy Lieutenant for West Midlands, Ms. Ursula Russell MBE, who assessed us for QAVS – “For three weeks each summer the Positive Images Festival celebrates the culture and traditions of Coventry’s varied communities while demonstrating that all are valued as citizens of one large community. The dedicated volunteers offer an impressive example of harmonious working; they are, individually and collectively, one of the most enthusiastic groups of volunteers that I have met. I am absolutely delighted that their hard work has been rewarded by this prestigious honour.”

*Positive comments from attendees: The whole world under the sun – fun, food & friendship. Fantastic. (Multicultural Big Lunch); “I have been round all the stalls and now feel more educated and better-informed about services and volunteering opportunities.” (A Senior Citizen at the Community Information Fair)

*We have unearthed new talent. Coventry has talent in abundance.

If your appetite has been whetted, why not visit our website www.positiveimagesfestival.co.uk

The most positive thing I can say about the festival is that diverse communities of our city get together, work together and form an orchestra that never plays out of tune.

Mehru Fitter MBE
Positive Images Festival