The official South Asian Heritage Month calendar 2021 has been released, with over 100 planned events running until August 17. Curated in partnership with individuals, groups and organisations across the UK, the calendar covers a diverse range of topics encompassing this year’s five themes: Identity, Sports, History, Health & Wellbeing, Creative Arts.
Co-founder Jasvir Singh OBE said: “South Asian Heritage Month matters because we need to have ownership of our own narratives, our own stories, and our own lived experiences. Our aim is to promote British South Asian heritage and history, through arts, culture and education, with the ultimate goal of helping people to understand the diversity of present-day Britain better.
“There are so many exciting events, and we’re looking forward to what should be a month to remember’.
A new website has also been launched to coincide with the release of the official calendar.
Co-founder Dr Binita Kane added: “South Asian Heritage Month 2021 is the perfect opportunity to celebrate, commemorate and educate about modern South Asian identity in Britain today. We couldn’t be prouder of our team of volunteers who have pulled this together, but also the public and all the organisations who have supported us. We’ve been blown away by the level of interest and can’t wait for it to kick off this Sunday”
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Calendar highlights include:
Literature based events each day curated by #SouthAsianWriters, ranging from interviews with award-winning writer Nikesh Shukla (Sun 8th Aug, 7pm) and TV presenter Anita Rani (Wed 4th Aug, 6pm) through to creative workshops for songwriting (Sun 1st Aug, 3pm), a writing course for women of colour (Sun 8th Aug, 4pm) and an open mic night (Sun 25th Jul, 6pm)
UK Punjab Heritage Association’s bookclub, with Varinder Kalra recalling when the renowned singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan came to Slough (Mon 2nd Aug at 5pm), and Andrew Whitehead looking at the extraordinary life of Freda Bedi (Mon 9th Aug, 5pm)
Discussions and debates regarding the sporting world, addressing issues such as the visible absence of South Asian women in sport (Fri 23rd Jul, 6pm) and of South Asian men in football (Sat 7th Aug, 6pm). There are also events being organised by the England and Wales Cricket Board (Fri 30th Jul, 5pm) and the Football Association (Thu 5th Aug, 5pm)
Health and wellbeing events, such as the experience of South Asians during the pandemic (Sun 8th Aug, 7pm), debunking myths about the menopause (Wed 4th Aug, 7.30pm), weekly Chai and Chat events on health issues (Fri, 10am) and many more.
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The events programme is rich in its variety and reflects British South Asian identity across the nation. As well as celebrating the cultural heritage of South Asia through food, music and art, the month will raise awareness and debate relevant contemporary issues including mental health, disability awareness, and Partition. The vast majority of this year’s official events will be taking place online.
*Info: South Asian Heritage Month