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Organisers of Ilford ‘festival of colour’ appealing for help fundraising

Rachel Stovold, right, and Sumeet Dhamu, of charity Basti Ram, aim to host a Rachel Stovold, right, and Sumeet Dhamu, of charity Basti Ram, aim to host a "festival of colour" in Ilford

Saturday, June 14, 2014
12:00 PM

A charity is fundraising for a cultural attraction in Redbridge.

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Basti Ram is organising a “festival of colour,” which it hopes to stage in Melbourne Field, Ilford.

The group has received a Comic Relief grant, but is still a way off the total amount of money needed.

Fundraising officer Rachel Stovold, 24, said: “It is looking quite exciting. It is an Indian celebration where coloured powders get thrown around.

“It is a celebration at the end of winter and the start of spring.”

A key aspect of the attraction will be the involvement of young people.

Twelve will be selected to help organise it, attending workshops and sessions so they can gain event management skills.

It is hoped the participants will work towards an award and business mentors may be introduced to aid them further.

Rachel said: “The young people will be from a disengaged or disadvantaged background; they may be NEETS [not in education, employment or training] or in care or leaving care.”

The branch of the charity, which is now based in Hackney, has a special connection to Redbridge as it started here.

Rachel said: “We were based in Ilford up until last year and then we had to move – we got our first office.

“We had to move out of the area, which was sad.

“We wanted to do this within Redbridge because it is the home of the charity.”

The young organisers will be coached for several months, before the festival finally takes place in March.

Workspace to organise the attraction, which will include Indian traditional music, local performers and stalls, is being sought near Melbourne Field.

If you can rent out a room or are interested in volunteering, email rachel.bastiram@gmail.com or call 020 3714 5549.

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