A free virtual Festival of Connection will take place on January 18th to reclaim ‘Blue Monday’ – often considered the saddest day of the year – in the hope of offering some much-needed inspiration and cheer to the beginning of 2021.
The day-long festival, organised by virtual venue SocialEyes, as part of the Jo Cox Foundation’s Great Winter Get Together, offers a jam-packed programme of free online events, with something for everyone. Events confirmed include a DJ set with iconic actress Patsy Palmer, hilarious comedy with the award-winning, Josie Long and an inspiring Baking and Bake Off Q&A with Great British Bake Off alumni, Ugne Bubnaityte.
The day kicks off with an 80s inspired work-out session from Jo Cox’s sister, foundation ambassador and recent MBE recipient Kim Leadbeater while later on attendees will be treated to a rip-roaring Bingo session compered by Scottish drag duo, Bingo Babes.
Aspiring songsters eager to hone their harmonies can sign up to a singing lesson with West End star Tim Mahendran while the whole family are able to show off their moves during an uplifting dance class with Broadway choreographer, Lucy Hinds in the afternoon.
With the majority of the UK remaining under strict COVID restrictions and 60% of Brits reporting feeling more lonely during the pandemic, each event has been specially curated to be interactive and bring people together to spark a little bit of joy, one human connection at a time while enjoying music, comedy, inspirational talks and even magic shows.
Lee Beattie, co-founder of SocialEyes said: “January is always a tough month, but this one follows a particularly tough year. With the Festival of Connection, we hope to bring people together from across the country to enjoy a series of free events designed to make them smile. We also hope that employers will allow their teams a free hour across the day to attend an event in a bid to make this Monday less blue.”
The Festival of Connection is the culmination of the Great Winter Get Together an initiative of the Jo Cox Foundation which called on the public to reduce loneliness one connection at a time. This winter, nine million people in the UK said they were often or always alone. The five-week campaign set out to change that and saw hundreds of thousands of individuals take part in practical ways to tackle loneliness together.
Kim Leadbeater MBE said: “After the most challenging of years and what will no doubt be a difficult Christmas for many, it is extremely important to have things to look forward to, and I am really looking forward to the ‘Festival of Connection’ on January 18th. It is heart-warming to think that through Jo’s foundation and The Great Winter Get Together we can bring some joy and fun to people and blast the January (and Covid) blues away, at least for a while.”
All tickets for the Festival of Connection are free but you are invited to make a donation to support the Jo Cox Foundation’s work if you can. All donations will go directly to the charity.
To book tickets for any events visit www.socialeyes.club.
While we take every opportunity to ensure the details for Virtual Festival of Connection are accurate, we always advise that you contact the event organiser before setting out for the event to avoid disapointment. All information (whether in text or photographs) is given in good faith but should not be relied upon as being a statement of representation or fact.
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