At a special celebration in Winchester, Hampshire County Council has launched the Hampshire Interfaith Calendar 2018.
The latest calendar was launched at an event attended by more than 100 young artists from across Hampshire schools, including those whose 12 designs are featured on the calendar’s 12 monthly pages. The designs represent some of the religious festivals that take place throughout the year, for a range of faiths.
Speaking at the launch, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Communities, Partnerships and External Affairs, Councillor Andrew Joy, said: “Our creative Hampshire school children should be very proud of their entries to this annual competition, which promotes greater understanding of the different faith groups and cultures across the county. I am very impressed by the high standard of art work. I am also pleased to see young people showing such enthusiasm and respect for a wide range of faiths and their cultures.”
Children from primary, secondary and special schools entered pieces of artwork, inspired by religious education lessons, with each design intended to represent a religious event occurring in any calendar month of the year. Each winning calendar design relates to one of over a hundred religious festivals from the nine faith groups represented by the Interfaith Network for the UK: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism, Hinduism, Jainism, Zoroastrianism and the Baha’i faith.
Hampshire County Council is known nationally for the outstanding support it gives to the county’s Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education (SACRE) which has responsibility for the quality of provision of religious education across the county. This year’s calendar competition was organised by the Hampshire RE team and the judging panel included SACRE members. Members of SACRE include representatives from the various religions across Hampshire, including the Church of England, teachers’ associations and elected members of the County Council.
Councillor Roz Chadd, who chairs SACRE, said: “The imagination and creativity of Hampshire school children, captured within this calendar, beautifully expresses and brings to life the wonderful diversity of the different faiths represented. The images are very striking and give a fascinating insight into the religions featured. The calendar incorporates a full monthly planner, making it very useful as well.”
The calendar costs £5 plus postage, and can be purchased from Hampshire County Council’s online shop www.hants.gov.uk/shop where it is located in the ‘Giftshop’ category.