NATIONAL GYPSY, ROMA & TRAVELLER SYMPOSIUM

Monday 20th October 2014, Pierhead, Cardiff Bay

10.30am – 4.00pm

The Romani Cultural Arts Company is the leading Romani and Traveller community organisation in Wales, using the arts and culture as a vehicle for advocacy and empowerment amongst the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities. The RCAC seeks to build understanding and community cohesion between Gypsies and others, supporting individuals as “community champions” to become actors and agents of change, encouraging them to become active in making a difference for themselves.

The October 2014 “Great Gypsy, Roma, Traveller Debate” will bring together members of the Gypsy, Roma andTraveller community with politicians, policy makers and public servants to address the issues that have become so prevalent in the past few years. Why are Roma from Eastern Europe coming to the UK? Who are they and how are they related to Gypsies and Travellers? How can our schools, hospitals and housing services work with these communities? The invited panel of experts will address these questions and others, in an “any questions” panel and discussion with the audience.

RCAC is hosting this event to provide an opportunity for Gypsies, Roma and Travellers to express their views, in their own words while responding to the questions and concerns raised by service providers, local authority managers, teachers, health professionals and police officers. RCAC intends this debate to be the basis for a report to government that will better inform the EU National Roma Integration Strategy for Wales, to provide a better understanding between all communities and improve the dialogue between those that have a responsibility to deliver services and provision.

Roxanne Nazir said “The Open Society Initiative for Europe of the Open Society Foundations is very pleased to be supporting the 2014 Symposium. The Romani Cultural and Arts Company has a great reputation for its knowledge of the communities and for bringing these communities and stakeholders together. This event will provide the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller community with the space to express their concerns, change perceptions of the GRT communities and influence strategies going forwards. We very much look forward to the event.”

Dr. Ethel Brooks – 2011-2012 Fulbright Distinguished Chair, University of the Arts London said “The Romani Cultural and Arts Company has an outstanding record in artistic practice and community engagement, exemplified by its work with Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Communities across Wales through arts and culture practice and education. The Symposium will provide a unique space for Gypsy, Roma and Traveller community members to engage with politicians, academics, community advocates and policy makers to address the European Roma Integration Strategy and the work of the Welsh government in its implementation, along with other urgent questions facing our communities”.

Julie Morgan Assembly Member for Cardiff North said “I am delighted to speak at and support this years symposium.It is a wonderful opportunity for the different communities to come together to share experiences and give views to influence policy in this very important area”.

For more information please contact: Isaac Blake at isaacblakeatromaniartsdotcodotuk or on +44 (02920) 78 6439

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