Poetry changes lives at special event

Published on:

29 September 2017

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A nine-hour feast of poetry In Enfield aims to raise cash to support a family of Syrian refugees

- Special poetry event aims to raise money for a refugee family

- The Poem-a-thon features over 60 poets

- Donations can be made online

A nine-hour feast of poetry In Enfield aims to raise cash to support a family of Syrian refugees.

The Enfield Poem-a-thon, is being held on Sunday 1 October (the closest to National Poetry Day) between 10am and 7pm at The Dugdale Centre in Enfield Town. It will raise money for Enfield Refugee Welcome Group, the first Community Sponsorship Group in the UK to have resettled a refugee family under the government’s Vulnerable Children’s Resettlement Scheme.

Enfield Poem-a-thon organiser, poet Maggie Butt said, “I am so proud that Enfield has the first community sponsorship group in the country, to give the opportunity of a new life to a family of refugees. Although a poetry marathon seems an unlikely way to raise money, a similar event in Sheffield proved that poetry really can change lives.

The Enfield Poem-a-thon features more than 60 sponsored poets, including nationally known names and local poets and children from Highfield Primary School.

Each poet can read for eight minutes each and the event will be formally opened by the Deputy Mayor, Cllr Doris Jiagge, and will have a cake stall, a tombola and a poetry book stall.

The event will conclude with poet George Szirtes, who came to the UK as a Hungarian refugee at the age of eight. Other well-known poets include Mario Petrucci, Myra Schneider, Maggie Butt, Cheryl Moskowitz, Martyn Crucefix, Alwyn Marriage, Hylda Sims, Timothy Ades, Danielle Hope, Peter Phillips, and ex-Enfield mayor Jayne Buckland, plus poets from Enfield Stanza group, Palmers Green Stanza group, Palmers Green Poets and Enfield Poets.

The children from Highfield Primary School have been working for three years with poet-in-residence Cheryl Moskowitz to make poetry central in the curriculum.

Enfield Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Arts & Culture, Cllr Yasemin Brett, said: “We all deserve a home, not just the memory of one. That's why I'm proud to uphold the belief of fairness to all and join with the Enfield Refugee Welcome Group in raising awareness and financial support to give a new life to this family who were forced to flee their home in terrible circumstances.

“I am looking forward to hearing the poems throughout the day, and would like to thank everyone who has been involved in this important work.”

Donations can be made via: Just Giving