The Fair Share Festival is over! I’ll post some more detailed reflections later, but here are a few photos and some initial thoughts.
After a successful screening of The True Cost (a documentary about fast fashion) on Thursday, we woke on Saturday to heavy rain. Much of the set up was done in the rain, but the weather did clear before the start of the Festival. Unfortunately the weather wasn’t kind to us as it was quite hot on both Saturday and Sunday – especially as much of the festival was on the dark concrete playground – and there were strong winds. In fact while a local TV news crew were filming in the main hall, we nearly had a 6×6 metre marquee blow away! It would have been one way to get on the news!
One of the things I’ve learnt from the Family Action Centre is the value of starting a conference (or Festival in this case) with music. It was great having a Ukulele group perform and then, as part of acknowledging the traditional owners of the land, some Aboriginal students from a local high school (with a couple of students from the primary school we were at) played the didgeridoo and danced.
We weren’t able to use some of the classrooms because they were being renovated and were offered some rooms upstairs instead. We worried that people might not go up there, so Cathy suggested using marquees instead. While the wind made them a bit challenging at times, they worked very well because people wandering past dropped in to listen.
One of the more popular activities was the clothing and book swap. I must admit I wasn’t sure that it was going to work, but Cathy and some of the committee were keen, so I was happy to go along with it. It was a real buzz and over 800 items were traded.
We wanted to create a good vibe at the festival and one of the ways we did it was to have some people wander around over lunch in some of Cathy’s upcycled garments – they certainly generated interest.
Another highlight was the tiny house project. As it was being filmed by Better Homes and Gardens with Adam Doville (one of the presenters and the 2014 winner of House Rules) there was lots of interest and many people watched what was going on. Some people also joined in to help make some of the fittings.
The idea of two Year 10 girls creating a tiny house captured lot’s of attention. The reality was that lots of other people were involved as well, so it turned into quite a community project.
Overall there was a great mix of talks, panel discussions, workshops, upcycling workshops and other activities. The Hamilton Public School also got behind the festival with providing food and a very popular lemonade stand, doing some wonderful signs and organising an evening of music.
As the theme of the festival was consumption, waste and upcycling we wanted to limit our waste. One of the things we did was to have reusable plates and eating utensils rather than disposable ones. It took a bit of organising (particularly to address concerns relating to sterilising) and a bit of extra work on the day, but it was great seeing people at the washing stations.
While there is scope for improvement, I feel confident it was a successful event with a wonderful vibe.
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