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This weekend (19-21 July), Hawkwood’s Seed Festival in Stroud will celebrate courageous leadership, creative expression and innovation in partnership with our natural world.
This year’s theme is Action, as people stand up, speak out and make a difference to create a better future for our children.
We are currently witnessing our youth as leaders, and watching them stand with Greta Thunberg ‘to make the planet Greta again’. Thousands have also descended on London and other major cities with the Extinction Rebellion movement to rise up for what we love.
The current student strikes for change on Fridays show that the younger generation is essential in these pressing times. They are aware of their power to make the future a better one, and they are exploring ways to make it happen.
Showing support, Seed Festival has both a special concessionary student price and is also offering large student groups discounted prices.
Attending the festival is always a fantastic opportunity for the younger attendees at the start of their careers/adulthood to learn, grow, explore, collaborate and even celebrate – all while meeting their heroes, having fun and camping out.
Parents of the future
As Roman Krznaric (recently featured on the BBC) would say, we need to become a good ancestor. A similar message is in Children’s Fire, a book by Embercombe’s Mac Macartney: we must make sure all our actions do not have an adverse effect on seven generations to come. We are the ‘parents’ of the future.
Alongside deep yet inspiring talks and workshops at Hawkwood’s Seed Festival, there will be plenty of fun family activities, partly because more and more children come to the festival, but also for us to really connect with the ‘why’.
The reason we act in a deeply committed way to mitigate climate is because we want our children, who are learning a new circus skill or weaving leaves into a huge loom in the organic playground, to live in a world that has hope.
Education through discovery
When Seed Festival producer and musician Victoria Whelan first became a mum, suddenly her interest in ecology became obsessive. Her first album as a parent was a climate change album called ‘Too Late To Pray’, launched in a church where Jonathon Porritt was speaking.
The festival’s amazing music, exciting speakers, engaging workshops and inspirational stalls are all focused on the aim of education through discovery: how we can make a difference to ‘feed our kids futures’ – starting now.
You can expect to gain knowledge and everyday tips that can make the planet a healthier, safer, more sustainable place for our children and grandchildren – and those still yet to come.
Music, speakers and connections
Bringing together some of the most inspirational and brightest minds, the festival creates space for crucial conversations and critical connections, whether you’re inspired by a headlining speaker, learning a new skill or dancing with a band whose music speaks to your deep desire for change!
Over 100 inspiring actions will be shared. Future-thinking speakers include environmentalist Jonathon Porritt; BBC Springwatch’s Gillian Burke; Extinction Rebellion co-founder Dr Gail Bradbrook, Soil Association’s Helen Browning; RSA’s Matthew Taylor; C40 cities’ Rachel Huxley, Permaculture legend Maddy Harland; Empathy Museum founder Roman Krznaric; Embercombe’s Mac Macartney; Julie’s Bicycle founder Alison Tickell; Friends of the Earth CEO Craig Bennett, and Rob Hopkins from Transition Network – and that’s just the start.
Don’t forget to play
Between all this deep thinking and life changing stuff, take some time to play – with your children, with your partner, with your friends. Spend quality time connecting. Perhaps you will learn to juggle, plate spin, unicycle – and what are devil sticks?
Maybe you’ll get your hips moving with the hula hoops, or spend some quiet time listening to stories, or weave a sensory tapestry of twigs, flowers and grasses – weaving in intentions for the world we long for with our children.
World Jungle, Organic Playground and Semble (formerly Project Dirt) will offer fabulous family fun at this year’s festival, offering a whole range of activities from circus skill workshops, nature looming, upscaled fashion, arts and crafts, immersive woodland storytime, and so much more. Take a moment to have fun between the pressing issues of our time.
Restore and connect
Across the country and around the globe inspirational figures and dedicated communities are rising up to make a stand against climate change and the destruction the natural world is currently facing.
Hawkwood has a special atmosphere: the country house is set in the woodlands, with a biodynamic farm and a natural spring. It provides a serene and beautiful space for festivalgoers to restore and connect with nature whilst absorbing and contributing to these big conversations.
Hawkwood’s Seed Festival has been described as a ‘conference in a field’. It’s a very intentional event, and there has never been a more crucial time for people to come together and rise up for our future and for the planet.
So gather up all the family, pack that tent, book your tickets and get ready to make those summer memories.