Building on the success of hosting the UK’s first-ever Asian Woman Festival in March 2019, where over 1000 people came together across the UK and internationally, the Asian Woman Festival team return, led by their founder Shani Dhanda, to put on the second year of the event which celebrates the lives of Asian women in the diaspora.

The one-day event is set to be held on 4th April 2020 at Walsall Football Club and BBC Radio London and BBC Radio WM presenter, Shay Grewal returns as festival host.

The festival will bring together an impressive selection of contributors to facilitate dialogue

around issues facing Asian women and girls today on the theme of honour, or ‘izzat’, within the south Asian community. The festival will play host to panel discussions on topics affecting the lives of Asian women exploring the theme of honour and shame, with live performances, stalls selling unique products and an art exhibition.

The festival line-up includes:

  • Nikita Gill, one of the most exciting young writers and poets
  • Noreen Khan, award-winning radio and TV presenter
  • Jasvinder Sanghera CBE author, campaigner and activist against forced marriage

Established last year as a first-of-its-kind event, the festival will continue with its mission to smash stereotypes, end taboos and empower Asian women from all walks of life. “Before I founded the festival, I was looking for an event where I could meet like-minded people, and be able to share and discuss the challenges, as well as the beauty, of what it is to be an Asian woman living in the UK right now. There wasn’t anything out there so I decided to create it myself” explains event founder Shani Dhanda, who is an award-winning disability activist who has most recently fronted Linkedin’s first TV campaign #InItTogether, and is the creator of the Diversability Card.

“The success of our first festival last year just demonstrated how much an event like this is needed for South Asian women. I love attending feminist events, but I often felt like my experiences as an Asian woman are not always reflected in the content, and so we are here to put Asian women at the heart of our event. Representation is more important than ever and true representation is intersectional.”

The volunteer-led festival is supporting Crisis through its fundraising activity on the festival day.

Richard Lee – Director of Fundraising, Crisis UK

“It is great that the Asian Woman Festival has chosen to support Crisis, it is only through partnerships like this that we can work to end homelessness. Crisis is there to help those who need us most today and create the change that will end homelessness for good. The Asian Woman Festival looks like a great event that is all about empowering, challenging stereotypes and celebrating Asian women. I look forward to working with them in 2020 and would like to thank them again and wish them lots of luck for their event.”

The Asian Woman Festival is on 4 April at Walsall Football Club. Tickets are available at www.asianwomanfestival.com and are priced between £15 – £20 for the entire day. Everyone is welcome, you don’t have to identify as a female or be Asian to attend, as long as you want to be part of this much needed conversation.

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