“The way you change a system nationally is to do thousands of local things, and eventually the system evolves”Joe Concra
The Fire Starter Festival has begun to create a movement around showcasing and encouraging creativity and innovation for social change and transformation, enabling people to be part of a national programme while still being able to focus on local change and issues.
Fire Starter Wales is designed to bring the Fire Starter ethos to Wales, to celebrate the various creative and innovative ways in which we are all contributing to the creation of a Wales that we all want to live in, now and in the future. It’s also a way of addressing the longer term needs of the Well-being of Future Generations Act.
The inaugural Fire Starter Wales Festival was held between 27th January and 14th February 2020. The majority of events were hosted by communities along with partners and colleagues from across public, voluntary and private sector services in Wales.
Benefits of Fire Starter Wales
Fire Starter Wales is designed to provide a three-week festival of collaborative learning events, illuminating creative, disruptive and innovative ways in which we can all transform ourselves, our organisations and wider society.
Small Fires of Change (our theory of change)
- We believe that in complexity, change happens through emergence.
- Creative spaces and approaches encourage diversity of perspectives on complex issues.
- Small actions allow us to take small risks, try new things – bringing attention to new possibilities.
- Actions could be as simple as exploring a question or having a conversation – that can ignite systemic change.
We invite you to host a bespoke event on a theme, topic or area of work you feel aligns to our ethos. Either way, there are many benefits to projects, programmes and organisations who host events through Fire Starter Wales, including opportunities to:
- showcase your work.
- extend networks and develop ideas with new partners.
- participate in a national platform, demonstrating innovation and creativity in public service.
- collaborate and use public resources more effectively and efficiently.
- help shape the social, economic, environmental and cultural well-being of Wales.
Host an event
To host an event, your event must fit with the core principles and ethos of Fire Starter Wales.
Core principles and ethos
Fire Starter Wales events should:
- celebrate the various creative and innovative ways in which we are all contributing to the creation of a Wales that we all want to live in, now and in the future.
- give participants opportunities to hear about and get involved in areas of work which they may not have been exposed to before.
- be hosted in creative, different and engaging ways, making best use of your talents, skills and interests, both in and out of work.
- make use of different spaces, venues and locations across Wales, both indoor and outdoor.
Events hosted during the festival must be:
- free to attend – there is no charge for participation in Fire Starter Wales events.
- accessible and open – events must be open to participants, no matter their organisation or background.
- self-organised – events must be organised by those hosting them and their partners. Unfortunately the Fire Starter Wales team has limited capacity and cannot support, resource or fund events.
Events must not be:
- Viewed as a commercial opportunity.
- A platform to push one ideology or political viewpoint.
Roles and responsibilities
We hope that you will join us and add an event to the Fire Starter Wales programme. To help you, below are a few of the responsibilities we hold as organisers, as well as a few of the responsibilities we expect event hosts to take on.
Our role – Fire Starter Wales organisers
- We will maintain the overall programme for Fire Starter Wales Festival
- We will link to all Fire Starter Wales events from our events calendar on the Fire Starter website, maximising the reach and engagement for all events.
- We will share all Fire Starter Wales events in our programmed mailshots, which will be circulated widely around public and third sector networks in Wales.
- We will publicise Fire Starter Wales as a whole, and will help you to make connections to new sectors and organisations.
Your role – event host
- You, and your event partners will resource all facilitation and administration required to run your event, which includes all health and safety, ethical and privacy requirements.
- You will publicise your event (and hopefully the festival as a whole) to your networks. The most successful events are those that are publicised by hosts as well as the Fire Starter Wales organisers.
- You will share outputs from your event – whether photos, case studies, videos or evaluations – with the Fire Starter Wales organisers, to help us build evidence of the impact of the festival.
- You will have fun! Fire Starter Wales is all about creativity and innovation – we hope you will keep the spirit of creativity and play with you throughout the process of participating in the festival.
If you aren’t sure whether your event fits within this programme, please contact us to discuss further at FireStarterWales@gov.wales.
Fire Starter Wales Enquiry
Please complete the following form so that we can arrange help/advice/guidance for your Fire Starter Wales event.
Submit your event
You must submit your event information through the Submit Event form – closing date 17 January 2020.
Please check the notes about the following questions:
- Event Banner / Photo – we may change this to the Fire Starter Wales logo
- Link To Event Page – you can link to any event web page, not just Eventbrite
- Event Categories – please choose ‘Fire Starter Wales’ in the Event Categories field. This will help us to review your event more quickly.
We will aim to review your event within three working days. If you have any queries about your event submission, please contact us at FireStarterWales@gov.wales.
Fire Starter Wales is supported and curated by Academi Wales, and the majority of events are hosted by communities along with partners and colleagues from across public, voluntary and private sector services in Wales.
Contact us at FireStarterWales@gov.wales.
Why we host Fire Starter Wales
Globally and nationally, we face a complexity of challenges that cannot be addressed by any individual, organisation, sector, or country working in isolation. We need creative spaces and different kinds of conversations to connect and reconnect, explore, challenge, and imagine what is possible. We need to take risks in trying out ideas and learn from sharing ‘work in progress’.
Fire Starter Wales partners
Overall creative production of Fire Starter Wales is retained by Academi Wales. In collaboration with partners we set the ethos and parameters of the festival.
The festival is facilitated by a core Academi Wales team who:
- support local event organisers in Wales to develop ideas into events.
- curate events into an overall programme which is publicised through networks.
Local organising teams are responsible for curating events in their own area, and may want to consider how they support individual event hosts.
Fire Starter Wales is facilitated by Academi Wales, and supported by public service organisations including: Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, Co-production Network for Wales, Dyfed-Powys Police, Eden Project Communities, Public Health Wales, Tempo, Wales Council for Voluntary Action, Wrexham Glyndwr University and Y Lab.
Future opportunities for developing the festival
We encourage the use of creative approaches. Traditionally, the arts have led in this field, with a range of festival events providing fertile ground for stimulation. We are keen to explore in what ways we might bring some more of these approaches into Fire Starter Wales.