Flagship family day tops the bill for Africa Day 2018

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Flagship family day tops the bill for Africa Day 2018

Africa Day in Dublin's Phoenix Park 2017

People of African origin in Offaly and other Leinster counties can look forward to joining with Irish people celebrate Africa Day 2018 in May at a series of events nationwide.

Supported by Irish Aid, the day includes a flagship family day in the grounds of Farmleigh Estate in Dublin’s Phoenix Park on Sunday, 27th May and regional events in Cork, Galway, Meath, Kilkenny, Limerick, Waterford and Wexford.

This year’s Africa Day Dublin event will feature three stages of live music, with performances by well-known African and Irish musicians, traditional African drumming and dance workshops and cultural performances.

The flagship event will also feature an African bazaar showcasing food, hair-braiding and traditional fashion designs from various African countries, and a dedicated children’s area, ‘Mount Kiddimanjaro’. 

A special emphasis will be placed on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and the simple ways attendees can contribute to their achievement.

Across the country, a diverse programme of events will take place.

Highlights include:

Africa Day Cork, a family celebration in Fitzgerald’s Park, Cork on Saturday, 26th May.
The 11th Annual Galway African Film Festival, in the Bank of Ireland Theatre in NUIG, Galway, from 26th - 27th May.
An Africa Day Family Fun Day in Castle Park, Kilkenny on Sunday, 3rd June.
A ‘World Recipe Exchange’ in City Hall, Limerick on Monday, 21st May.
A red-carpet African fashion show in Meath County Offices, Co Meath on Friday, 25th May.
“Africa through the Senses: The Sights of Africa” in Waterford Cultural Quarter, Waterford, on Friday 15th June.
A celebration of African cuisine and culture in Presentation Centre, Enniscorthy, Co Wexford on Friday, 25th May.

SEE ALSO: Culture and colour expected at Offaly's Shakefest 2018

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney encourgaged Irish people to join in. 

“The volume and variety of events taking place across the country for Africa Day 2018 reflects the depth and breadth of Ireland’s relationship with many African countries.

 “Spearheaded by Irish Aid, Africa Day offers us a chance to take stock of the unique cultural and economic links between this small country and a diverse continent. Africa Day is not just an acknowledgement, but a celebration of the contribution of the African diaspora to all aspects of daily life in contemporary Ireland.

“I would encourage people around the country to engage with the Africa Day celebrations and to experience the cultures of the vibrant communities that have become part of Irish society,” he said.

 The programme of Africa Day events in Ireland is coordinated and supported by Irish Aid at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. It aims to highlight the scope and benefits of Ireland’s engagement with Africa and increase public awareness of Irish Aid’s development programme throughout Africa.

Africa Day, which falls on 25th May annually, is the official day of the African Union and marks African unity.  In Ireland, Africa Day events highlight the scope and benefits of Ireland’s engagement with Africa by:

o   Raising awareness of the official overseas aid programme managed by Irish Aid and its central focus on sub-Saharan Africa;

o   Raising awareness of the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development;

o   Increasing public understanding of Africa by highlighting the diversity and potential of the continent; and

o   Raising awareness of the potential for bilateral trade and investment linkages between Ireland and African countries.

Further details on the full schedule of Africa Day activities will be announced over the coming weeks via the Africa Day website at www.africaday.ie

Africa Day is also on Twitter @AfricaDay, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ africadayireland and on Instagram @africadayireland - Hashtag: #AfricaDay2018.

In Dublin, the national flagship event for Africa Day will take place from 11am to 6pm on Sunday, 27th May in the grounds of Farmleigh Estate in Dublin’s Phoenix Park. This is a family-focused event, and is free of charge to attend.  Highlights include three music stages featuring international and home-grown acts, an African Bazaar featuring stalls from different African countries, offering food, drumming, dance, hair-braiding, henna hand-painting, traditional fashion designs, and lots more. In addition to African community groups, a range of development NGOs will be present in the bazaar, offering fun activities, while the African embassies in Ireland will also be represented at the event. 

 In Cork, events will be organised by Cork City Council, in conjunction with the HSE and An Garda Síochána, as well as various NGOs and members of the African community. This year’s celebrations will be launched by the Lord Mayor in Millennium Hall on Thursday, 24th May, followed by a seminar; ‘African Migration: Motive, Challenges, Opportunities’. Africa Film Day will be held on Friday, 25th May and the Africa Day Family Celebration will be held in Fitzgerald’s Park, on Saturday, 26th May. An African Art exhibition will run over a number of days in the New Civic Office of Cork City Council. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/cork.

In Galway, the main Africa Day event will take place on Saturday, 26th May in Doughiska. It will bring together people of all ages and nationalities from the community and showcase African culture and society. Other Galway events include the 11th Annual Galway African Film Festival, a multi-cultural choir workshop and a special schools’ football event, in conjunction with the FAI, will involve children from eight primary schools across Galway. It will encourage engagement with African history as well as participation in the ‘Show Racism the Red Card’ programme. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/galway.

In Meath, Meath County Council and Cultúr Migrant Centre will host a red-carpet fashion show in the Meath County Offices on Friday, 25th May. This event will showcase the broad diversity in African clothing culture and will also feature African dance, art, drumming and face painting, as well as African cuisine. The event is designed to facilitate engagement with the wider community and encourage awareness of African culture in Meath. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/meath.

In Kilkenny, two events take place on Saturday, 2nd June; a photographic and arts exhibition of work from young members of the African community, as well as a Mini Trade and Business Fair for African entrepreneurs and business owners. Sunday, 3rd June will see a Family Fun Day in Kilkenny Castle Park with a wide range of African artists, comedians and dance troupes to be enjoyed. The 10th anniversary of the arrival of the Sudanese community to Kilkenny will also be celebrated. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/kilkenny.

In Limerick, Limerick City & County Council, in association with Doras Luimní, will present a number of events in celebration of Africa Day 2018. A Family Fun Day will take place in the Milk Market on Sunday, 27th May featuring music, crafts, entertainment and food.  Other Limerick events include an African Cup football tournament, run with assistance from the FAI and An Garda Síochána, and series of talks and workshops aimed at raising awareness of African culture and heritage in the country. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/limerick.

In Waterford, Waterford City & County Council will host a number of events under the theme of “Africa through the Senses: The Sights of Africa” on Friday, 15th June in Waterford Cultural Quarter. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/waterford.

 In Wexford, Wexford County Council, along with Wexford Local Development, will host a “Living Library” event to mark Africa Day 2018. This event will see members of the African community living in Wexford share their personal stories of life in Africa, as well as their life in Ireland, with the wider community. A celebration of African cuisine and culture will take place in Presentation Centre, Enniscorthy on Friday, 25th May. For more information visit: www.africaday.ie/waterford.