DIVERSECrawley’s History-  5th Anniversary

In the summer of 2017, Crawley Town was celebrating it’s 70th anniversary as a new town, when Carolyn Murphy and Marilyn Le Feuvre commentedon the very limited diverse events which did notreflect Crawley’s “ballooning” diverse population. Irma Stuart-tei agreed and joined them.

They decided to do something about it by forming DIVERSECrawley.

With Marilyn becoming Chair, Carolyn as Treasurer and Irma Stuart-tei as Secretary, they planned to launch DIVERSECrawleywithin a few months in October (Black History Month) 2017.

They recruited a few members from diverse communities:Ashwin Soni, Allen Vincatassin and Maja Jasko;wrote their Constitution with Crawley Community Action’s help;opened a bank account and successfully applied for funding from Crawley Borough Council.

DIVERSECrawley was launched at the Crawley Town Hall with diverse acts,  fashion show, and cultural food tasting programme.

This was so well received and supported that we decided to continue with DIVERSECrawley.

In 2018, we mainly had different Cultural Kitchen food demonstrations at The Hub, as well as slowly celebrating each other’s important cultural days.

Crawley Museum offered DIVERSECrawley and Crawley Campaign Against Racism their temporary Exhibition space in September and October and this has become an annual event now in October and November, with different themes like:Migration, Lockdown Cultural Kitchen, Black Lives Matter, Windrush Scandal, Chagossian Islands History, and Changing Faces of Crawley Museum Exhibition.

Our popular annual events now are:

  1. Monthly Cultural Kitchen (mainly virtual)
  2. School Resources Pack with our Cultural Events Calendar
  3. International Women’s Day giving out a Poem and a Rose to community women in the Crawley County Mall
  4. Diverse Story Reading at Crawley Library (in May and October)
  5. National Samosa Week in April
  6. World Day for Cultural Diversity on 21st May
  7. Crawley College engagements throughout the year
  8. Windrush Day on 22nd June
  9. Crawley Festival’s Cultural Kitchen by DIVERSECrawley
  10. Black History Month celebrations in October, including the Museum Exhibition
  11. November’s Diverse Museum Exhibition
  12. International Men’s Day on 19th November

On 23rd April 2021, DIVERSECrawley was given the High Sheriff Award for his “most impactful moment”, and Dr Timothy Fooks also dedicated a chapter to DIVERSECrawley in his book “A Year like no other”.

At our AGM in November 2021, the committee members elected are as follows:Marilyn Le Feuvre (CoFounder and Chair)South Africa, IrmaStuart-tei (CoFounder and Vice Chair)Barbados, Ashwin Soni (Secretary) India& Uganda, Carolyn Murphy (CoFounder and Treasurer) England, Carolyne Chikukwa (Publicity and Marketing) Zimbabwe, Halimah Yusuf-Hassan (Nigeria), Sabrina Jean (Chagossian Islands)Iyadh Daoud (Iraq)

In 2022, Crawley New Town is celebrating its 75th anniversary, while DIVERSECrawley is celebrating its 5th anniversary.

DIVERSECrawley has launched their Legacy Banner on 10th January 2022, which will have 31 different languages CONGRATULATIONS messages and Cultural Fabrics from 25 Community members.

We are also working on a rough TIMELINE to find out when diverse Community members moved to Crawley and why they moved here.

The completed Legacy Banner will be unveiled at our “World Day for Cultural Diversity” event on 21st May 2022 at the Crawley United Reformed Church, by Lord Lieutenant Susan Pyper.

The Legacy Banner will be the centre piece at the Crawley Museum Exhibitions in October and November, after which it will be donated to Crawley Museum.

To celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee in June 2022, DIVERSECrawley are planning a Diverse Puddings “Fit for a Queen” Area at the “ World Day for Cultural Diversity” event on 21st May.

All Committee members and other community members are also going to write on the Queen’s visits to our countries of origin which are part of the commonwealth.

These write ups will be our November Museum Exhibition.

SpecialThanks to ALL our:Sponsors, Volunteers and Supporters

By Marilyn Le Feuvre, CoFounder and Chair

(February 2022)