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Kite flying in solidarity with the children of Palestine

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Rodborough welcomed more than 100 people from Stroud and Gloucester to join in a kite flying event in solidarity with the children of Palestine.

According to the Guinness Book of Records, Palestine holds the world record for the greatest number of kites flown simultaneously. In an event hosted by UNWRA in 2011 at Al-Waha beach in Gaza, 12,350 kites were flown.

The day began with a kite-making workshop at the local community hall. The room was packed with parents and children painting and assembling their kites under the guidance of a kite flying enthusiast, before taking them for a practice flight on the field below.

  • more kites1 | Kite flying in solidarity with the children of Palestine
  • flying a home made kite | Kite flying in solidarity with the children of Palestine
  • kite making1 | Kite flying in solidarity with the children of Palestine
  • flying | Kite flying in solidarity with the children of Palestine
  • lots of kites | Kite flying in solidarity with the children of Palestine

In the afternoon everyone walked up to Rodborough Common to join a large group of people that had already gathered and started flying their kites, accompanied by Arabic music. 

It was a mostly dry and very windy day, perfect for the event and the response was overwhelmingly positive, with people from all across the community coming together walking up, flying and sharing kites, and sharing their sadness and concerns about the worsening situation in Gaza with others that feel the same way.

Many made generous donations to Medical Aid for Palestinians, the charity that works in partnership with Palestinian communities to uphold their rights to health and dignity.

If you would like to donate to their emergency relief campaign, you can do so here:

https://www.map.org.uk/donate/donate

One attendee said: “Thank you for making a space for it to be OK to be sad about what’s happening and to be with others who care.”

“It was inspiring to see hundreds coming out to show solidarity for Palestinians in a small town like Stroud, and to know that similar events are happening in towns and cities like ours across the world is very powerful.”

Another told us about how they have felt distressed and helpless during this brutal conflict and that coming together with others who feel similarly about what’s going on proves that we aren’t alone.

Diya from Stroud Palestine Solidarity Campaign: “It has been important to both show solidarity with Palestinians who have been suffering for far too long, to ensure they know they are not forgotten. 

“But just as important is the need to provide spaces for local communities to share their grief, their frustrations and anger about how little our government is doing, and how we are not alone, and we will not be silenced.”

District Councillor Robin Layfield, Community Independents, Rodborough, said: “Not everyone wants to go on a protest march but many, many people feel a huge sense of hurt, anguish and powerlessness over what is happening in Gaza. This event provided a calm, family-friendly outlet for everyone to come together and share their feelings.”

The event ended with a few words from Diya and a poem read out by a young child:

NOT JUST WHERE WE LIVE

When I think of Gaza, I feel sad.

When I think of how little we are doing I feel like shouting 

So many people don’t understand that children like us are getting hurt. 

So just stop, close your eyes, and think about how lucky we are. 

We are safe and have what we need to live.

There are a lot of children who don’t have what they need.

Now open your eyes, how does that feel?

And that is why we are here, protesting in solidarity for freedom and justice around the world and not just where we live.

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