We’ve always supported small park BIG RUN, which is held in our local park every June. It’s an event which raises funds for children’s projects in Gaza and women’s education in Palestine. The park is roughly the size of a refugee camp in Palestine that is home to 21,000 people, and we’re encouraged to reflect on the restrictions on movement that people there have to live with constantly.
Runners and walkers complete laps of the park over the 24 hours from Saturday noon to Sunday noon. People can sign up for whatever they want to commit to – from half an hour to 24 hours, at whatever speed works for you. This year two amazing individuals ran for the whole 24 hours despite a torrential thunderstorm in the darkest hours of the early morning!
Some of our choir members signed up for shorter stints – (four of us were in the park at 10.30pm) and as well as the running & walking we had our first BIG SING. About 200 singers from six local choirs and beyond joined our voices to sing “You’ll Never Walk Alone”. It was incredibly moving, opening with an Arabic translation of the lyrics being spoken over instrumental accompaniment, then the singers joining in, in unison to start with and then splitting into three gorgeous harmony lines.
The technology all worked and we had a live link to the projects in Gaza that we are fundraising for, as we sang together to let people know they are not forgotten, and that we stand with them.
I wasn’t the only one with tears in my eyes by the time we finished.
Helen Lyle was the conductor, and Emer McKay created the arrangement and played keyboard. The bass player was Nuala and the drummer Noah.
The other choirs were:
Sheffield Socialist Choir
Sheffield One World Choir
Body of Sound