Just Fest by Katherine Newbigging
Edinburgh has long been regarded as a city at peace and a peace-making city. just Festival celebrates that peace is not just an absence in Edinburgh, but a presence. Peace is not a fixed goal to be achieved and forgotten about but a complex process which has to be constantly worked on and reviewed by individuals, communities and nations.
However, Edinburgh is still home to, not only physical violence, but the violence of injustice, inequality, fear and mistrust. It is increasingly clear that peace cannot exist in isolation, just because one individual or community is at peace does not mean that they will not be affected by another in conflict.
As modern technology and logistics make the world more connected it is becoming clearer that actions in one community can affect other, both positively and negatively. With increasing mobility of peoples and cultures it can be seen that we live on a shared planet where we all share a responsibility for peace. Making friends with your neighbour is a great way to start this process.
So this year just Festival is partnering with over seventy local community organisations and faith groups to explore the work that is being done in Edinburgh on a local, national and international level to create sustainable peace for all that is based on compassion and justice. During August we will look at the hard realities of violence taking place today and show paths for positive action to create peaceful change. We will have over three hundred events in twenty venues across the city from St John’s Church to the Filmhouse to Annandale Mosque.
Our aim is to encourage people to connect with the communities around them, sharing knowledge, culture, and skills to build lasting friendships based on exploration and understanding. A great way to be at the heart of just Festival is to become a just Festival Volunteer. We are looking for people to join of our festival team to help welcome audience members, take tickets and ensure our events run smoothly. With volunteers coming from all faiths, backgrounds, nationalities and ages it is a great way to make new friends. We aim to make sure that volunteers get as much back from the festival as they put in.
Not only do volunteers get to attend just Festival events for free but we create a special volunteer programme to inspire and empower volunteers to find paths to positive action. We invite everyone to attend the just Festival 2013 launch at 6pm on 3rd August at St John’s Church. It will be a great mix of inspirational speakers and festival performers.
To find out more information about just Festival or volunteering at just Festival please visit
email [email protected]