Today this campaign continues, with an additional focus of promoting the use of environmentally friendly materials, the availability of fairly traded goods to purchase from GRASSROOTS, and the creation of bespoke Fairtrade Gift Hampers.
Between 2010 to 2013, GRASSROOTS developed the unique ‘Faith Woodlands Communities’ Project in partnership with the Luton & Bedford Councils of Faiths, Greensand Trust and the Forestry Commission, which facilitated the creation of nature trails, peace labyrinths and a range of activities in Maulden Woods, which many groups from the community began to utilise, putting people back in touch with nature. In the areas of Art and Culture, GRASSROOTS invited bands like Berakah (a professional band of Jewish, Christian and Muslim musicians) to Luton, holding multicultural evenings of sharing and celebration during One World Week, and presented local talent to hundreds of people who came to join its diverse programmes of events and initiatives. Sport was also utilised as a way of increasing engagement, with Interfaith Cricket Matches between Luton, Leicester, Bedford, Watford and St Albans being held, Interfaith football tournaments supported and then more recently, following the London 2012 Olympics, the development of a 4 year-long Community Archery Programme throughout the town, which proved to be highly successful and has left a legacy of two community archery clubs still running.
Working with Women Across Faiths and Cultures became a significant focus too, with events and initiatives taking place at a very grassroots level in partnership a women’s cooperative group called ‘Ghar Se Ghar’ (Hindi/Urdu words meaning Home to Home). From this stemmed many activities, including trips, workshops and a range of other events including its women-only event called ‘Precious Pearls’, taking place annually during International Women’s Week and which continues to grow in popularity.