Monday, 13 June 2011

University of Nottingham Mayfest - Part 2 - Actions

Following on from a review of BFTF's experience of the University of Nottingham's Community Open Day called "Mayfest" (see here), it is perhaps worth mentioning a couple of actions that related to it.

Firstly, before the event, BFTF contacted as many of Nottingham's Mosques as possible, suggesting that if they felt that learning and education have an important place in Islam then they may wish to make an announcement after Friday prayers to inform the congregations about the Mayfest event. BFTF also gave the local mosque a copy of the programme of events with a handwritten note asking if this could be mentioned during the announcements before Friday prayers.

Secondly, BFTF contacted Sharon Clancy, head of the Community Partnerships team that organised the original Mayfest event (organisation and marketing passed on to the University Events Team for this years event), and asked her if she could take part in an interview about the Mayfest event and community outreach by the University.

Thirdly, BFTF contacted the schools attended by the kids, suggesting that they may wish to encourage the parents of their students (and the students themselves) to attend the event next year.

Dear Reader, perhaps you are aware of an event that you think your local school, place of worship, University or even Council should be covering or supporting. If so, why not let them know about it? It's certainly a more productive option than just complaining after the event. . .

Update: (14 Jun 11)
Announcement at local mosque
BFTF's local mosque commented that they had not been able to include an announcement regarding the Mayfest event before Friday prayers.

Sharon Clancy
A fast and very postive response from Sharon resulted in a fascinating interview on Radio Dawn 107.6FM. One of the most interesting parts of the discussion related to the fact that students and staff from the University often work with schools across the city, providing help and demonstrations on a number of subjects ranging from Vikings to Engineering. It was also a pleasant surprise to hear that there is a push to ensure that research findings are in the public domain (critically, this means that ordinary members of the public can check for themselves whether media reports about "scientists" research are being reported fairly). It was interesting to hear how changes in the way the event was marketed resulted in very different outcomes in terms of the publicity that the event received within schools. Inshallah, at some point in the future a transcript of the interview should be available, which will allow a more comprehensive report to be posted.

Update: (16 Jun 11)
Received an email from school saying that they thought this was a "brilliant" event and that they would be only to happy to publicise it next year.

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