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Just Festival – Edinburgh’s social justice and human rights festival – set to deliver a carefully curated hybrid of online and live events to celebrate 20th Anniversary

Just Festival, Edinburgh’s social justice and human rights festival have confirmed that, despite the current challenges presented by the recent pandemic, they are set to deliver a carefully curated hybrid of online and physical events to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the festival, which will take place from 16th – 23rd August.   

Helen Trew, who has been recently appointed as the Festival Director for Just Festival comments, “Just Festival has been an important part of the Fringe for many years and, when I took over, I hadn’t expected it to be under the strange and unusual circumstances we all find ourselves in! We’d like to extend a special thanks to Helen Foord, CEO of ELE Global and Just Festival Board Member, who has gone above and beyond, volunteering her skill sets to support the delivery of this programme. Her skills and knowledge have been invaluable, and her energy has been amazing.  

ELE Global have volunteered their services to Just Festival, supporting them with all of their digital communications, project management, social media and event promotion. Helen Foord, CEO of ELE Global comments, “The Just Festival is an event very close to my heart, and directly linked with our own business values, as it works to challenge perceptions, celebrate differences and encourage dialogue on the key issues of our time. During these uncertain times, it’s never been more important for us to unite and support one another, so I have been delighted to offer my team, to help.”   

The online programme, based on the theme of ‘transformations’, will draw together a programme of digital events accessible online via Zoom.  These virtual events will creatan important space for dialogue and platforms for engagement in local, national and international questions of social justice, equality and identity, both from the religious and non-religious perspectives  

The live element of the festival will take place at Cornerstone Centre, St. John’s Church, Princes Street from 18th – 22nd August. Stan’s Cafe will bring the internationally acclaimed ‘Of All The People In All The World’ back to Edinburgh.  

In this simple performance installation, artists build small and large mounds of rice representing the political and social realities in the world: one grain of rice for the Queen, twelve grains for people who have walked on the moon, a pile for teachers in the UK, a heap for millionaires in Europe, and a mountain for people fleeing from war and disaster.  

Visitors are invited to put their questions and suggestions to the artists, ensuring an ever-changing rice landscape. By making normally abstract statistics tangible and placing them in thoughtful relation to each other, this powerful work of art is witty, shocking and ultimately moving.  

Helen Trew concludes, “Despite all of the logistical challenges and physical social distancing restrictions, we decided to carry on and rethink our programme in a way that would best maintain the unique spirit of the Just Festival and create the space for people to gather online to discuss those issues that most affect our lives today with our fantastic range of eclectic and expert panellists.  

This year has brought serious difficulties to our lives, and we are mindful of the insecurity left by the lockdown for many people.  As a result, we have decided not to charge for our events howeverif you are able, we would appreciate your support through our donation scheme on registration which will enable the Just Festival charity to sustain its work. 

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