Sanctuary of Our City
A Community Connectors project supported by UK City of Culture 2021
The Sanctuary of Our City film is about a project supported by the UK City of Culture delivered by Community Connector Theo Ioannou
Asylum seekers and refugees who identify as women joined Community Connector Theo Ioannou on a four-week theatre programme for migrants Seeking ways to improve their language skills, build confidence and make new friends, each session began with an holistic guided meditation using earth element techniques delievered by Victoria Sesi and supported by Amal Parr
Theo supports refugee communities and supported Coventry Welcomes (Refugee Week activity), with a focus on communities in which English is not their first language.
What you are most looking forward to during your time as a Community Connector?
I am mostly looking forward to sharing knowledge, experience and expertise with like-minded people who share my passion for community development and/or the arts. I am also looking forward to delivering the cultural project that I want to organize as I know that this experience will be fulfilling and gratifying.
How do you feel about being on the programme, are you excited and what are you hoping to achieve?
I am very excited to be on the programme and I am looking forward to getting to know everyone better and familiarize myself with their work. Through this programme, I am hoping to develop my skills in production and community development and become better networked with other people who organise similar activities and their communities.
About Community the Connector programme
Community organisers from across Coventry are being given the opportunity to develop their skills thanks to a new programme from Coventry City of Culture Trust in partnership with 64 Million Artists.
The Community Connectors programme has been launched to find eight local people from across Coventry who are passionate about their communities. These people might already be involved in organising community events and projects, or those who help to bring together local people around a common challenge or issue.
The programme aims to support these community champions to use their connections and build on their skills to create change in their area.
The selected individuals will benefit from training that will help them develop their ideas and abilities, which will culminate in each of the eight creating their own artistic community event by March 2021.
Chenine Bhathena, Creative Director of Coventry City of Culture Trust, said: “As we have engaged with communities right across Coventry, we have met some brilliant and accomplished Community Connectors in many different cultural communities, in all parts of the city, but we know there are many more of these people out there.
“People may not always consider themselves as being key community figures but the incredible work they do in their community and the trust their communities place in them makes them indispensable to our city.
“We want to find more of these outstanding people, build their skills and confidence over the coming months so that we can create an extended community-based team to ensure that City of Culture is created with and by everyone in the city.
“We hope citizens in Coventry will take up this great opportunity and put themselves forward. It is a chance for us to really support some of the great people who work every day in their communities to make our city great!”