By Dicte Frost
The Danish network of ecovillages, LØS, in collaboration with GEN Ukraine, is co-creating Sustainability and Resilience Festival, a new event to be held in the southern countryside of Denmark from September 11th to October 11th. The festival is funded by the Danish ministry of foreign affairs, CISU, as part of a wider collaboration between GEN Ukraine and LØS.
The festival will give participants practical and tangible tools and skills to become more resilient and sustainable in their own lives. With the festival, LØS aims to bring together different parts of the Danish sustainability movement – ecovillages, ancient self-sustaining practices, zero waste influencers, local know-how, political agents – and thereby mobilise common action and facilitate a space where future synergies and collaborations can arise. GEN Europe is one of the festival partners and is excited to see it come to fruition.
The festival came forth as an ecovillage response to the current coronavirus pandemic and the entangled economic crisis. Inspired by GEN Ukraine’s responsive actions of swiftly creating a series of webinars, and now videos, with the purpose of giving people practical skills to be more resilient in the midst of the crisis, the idea of a festival took shape. Resilience is the central theme. Feelings of lack of agency can arise in situations where external forces have grave effects on our lives, inspiring spaces for reflection – how will I support myself if I lose my job? How can I grow my own food? How can I live as a more sustainable being on this planet? How do I make myself less dependent on large-scale systems? The festival seeks to offer a variety of answers to these questions phrased as easy-implementable tools and skills.
The festival has been formatted to fit the current situation by both offering an offline and online version. The offline festival experience will be more intimate than traditional festivals, with a low number of participants that can fit into the Danish Covid-19 regulations. The online festival experience will offer webinars livestreamed directly from the festival and videos created by GEN Ukraine. Participation in the online festival is free of charge, with the hope to make the material as accessible as possible.
Experimental festival format
Apart from offering both an online and offline festival experience, the Sustainability and Resilience Festival is also challenging other festival conventions. The festival will explore using a rural region as the festival site. The one month long festival will take place at multiple cultural and sustainability-related locations in a rural part of Denmark: Sydfyn. Participants are thus invited to dive into the opportunities of cultural life outside the urban centres and gain curiosity on rural abundance. This also entails a programme with a mix of local and nationally renowned speakers and workshop facilitators.
What is available in English?
You might ask yourself what the festival will offer if you do not speak Danish. As part of the festival, a series of videos produced by GEN Ukraine will be translated with English subtitles and made freely available. The videos will include topics such as growing food on whatever space you have – be it a balcony, garden or window-space, making your own essential products, wildharvesting, or social tools for community-building.
Find out more on the festival website, Facebook Event and event Instagram @modstandsdygtig.festival