The Happy List: 9 Ways To Have Fun And Give Back This Week

Forget Black Friday, we’ve got nine awesome events for you instead: from incredible Syrian music to an award-winning documnetary on climate change… and much more. Want this straight to...

Forget Black Friday, we’ve got nine awesome events for you instead: from incredible Syrian music to an award-winning documnetary on climate change… and much more. Want this straight to your inbox every week? Just pop your email address in the form below and we’ll do the rest. Or come join our community of ethical explorers over on Facebook.

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1. Join #BrightFriday at one these free clothes swaps @ various – Monday 20th to Wednesday 22nd

In a sustainabiity inspire response to Black Friday, environmental charity Hubbub is putting on free clothes swaps all around London. So if you’ve got a wardrobe full of clothes you don’t wear, bring them along and trade them in.

There will also be:
• Free drop-in workshops on making and mending clothes and how to copy the latest high street trends at home
• A stylist on hand to give you expert advice on how to create your perfect wardrobe

Check out Hubbub’s Facebook events page for details of when and where.


2. Attend the album launch of Syrian musician Maya Youssuf @ Rich Mix – Monday 20th

Combining her extraordinary talent and dexterity, Maya Youssef مايا يوسف has crafted a unique and innovative approach to playing the qanun, a traditional Syrian 78 stringed plucked zither famed for its penetrating and illustrious sound. ‘Syrian Dreams’ is her personal journey through the 6 years of war in Syria, a translation of her memories of home and an expression of a deeply rooted connection to her music. Her latest album, produced by Jerry Boys, the Grammy-winning engineer of the Buena Vista Social Club series, and overseen by renowned record producer Joe Boyd, reveals an unparalleled work of musical ingenuity, agility and finesse, firmly placing her amongst some of the most skilled qanun players of her generation.

Debuting her highly anticipated album, Maya will be supported by Basel Saleh of the Orchestra of Syrian Musicians, renowned Syrian oud player, conductor and choir leader whose stunning work has resonated far beyond his native Homs to be featured throughout prestigious festivals in the Middle East and Europe.

Find out more here and get your £11.50 tickets here. The event starts at 7pm.

3. Film of the week: How To Let Go Of The World @ Canvas Cafe – Thursday 23rd

Join Oscar-nominated director Josh Fox in his personal investigation of the greatest threat facing humanity today. His documentary acknowledges that it may be too late to stop some of the worst consequences of climate change but asks, ‘What is it that climate change can’t destroy?’ Travelling to twelve countries on six continents, Josh explores what it means to be alive in a period of rapid change and impending crisis. The screening is being hosted by grassroots non-profit organisation Less Meat Less Heat UK who will be presenting beforehand about their goal to address climate change by spreading the word about the carbon footprint of beef and lamb. You’ll also have a chance to meet some of their volunteers about their current campaigns and how you can get involved.

Tickets can be bought here for £11.33. Doors open at 6:30pm


4. Celebrate the flavours and stories of Palestine with Nisrin of Zaad Dinner Club @ London Cooking Project  – Saturday 25th

The Stories On Our Plate (SOOP) supper club series celebrates cuisines showcased by refugee, former refugee and asylum seeker, and migrant chefs. It’s all about celebrating our differences through the shared experience of a meal… and raising money for an important cause in the process. For ihis month’s fundraiser, SOOP is teaming up with chef Nisrin Abuorf of Zaad Dinner Club. This unique evening celebrates Nisrin’s Palestinian heritage, and you will also hear about SOOP’s wider work and grounding philosophies. Expect great food, stories, and conversation. All profits from SOOP’s monthly series go towards the SOOP culinary programme for cooks with refugee and migrant backgrounds. Expect sharing and getting stuck in with strangers around the table.

Tickets are £34 and can be bought on Grub Club here.

5. Check out a special warm up party for the UK Beatbox Championship @ Grow, Hackney – Saturday 25th

The International Beatbox Family is descending on London, and – for one night only – on Hackney Wick! As a warm up to the big Championship event on the 26th, social enterprise GROW is hosting a very special welcome party. Expect national, european and world champion beatboxers from around the globe to jump on stage and trade beats & licks, battle and jam. The Beatbox Collective – a long-standing favourite of Hackney Wick (regular headliner at Hackney WickED Arts Festival and featuring local Wick boy Tobias Hug aka the BFG aka BlackForestGhetto) will kick the jam off with a short showcase before opening up the stage to the worldwide beatbox family. There will also be workshops and other daytime activities – all events are FREE.

This free event will run from 4pm to just before midnight. Just turn up.


6. Browse unique Christmas gifts at an independent designers market @ V&A Museum of Childhood – Sunday 26th

The V&A Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green is hosting a special Christmas market, showcasing the work of some of London’s most exciting independent designers. Enter into the Christmas spirit with a glass of mulled wine, a mince pie, and the melodic sounds of the Becontree Brass Band while you discover unique gifts from established and emerging designers and makers. From jewellery to home ware, children’s clothes & toys to festive cards & prints, there’s something for everyone. You can even add that personal touch and get creative with a ‘Craft your own Christmas’ workshops. Refuel with a special Christmas menu at the Museum cafe or a culinary delight from outdoor vendors from Feast It.

The market will run from 10:00am – 5pm. More details can be found here.

Social enterprise cafe Kahaila is hosting a very special Thanksgiving supper club. Bring a dish, bring a friend… that’s it!

Check out the Facebook event page for updates.

8. Catch a fundraising screening of Triumph and meet Lorik Cana @ Prince Charles Cinema – Saturday 25th

One for the football fans… Triumph captures the cultural, political and historical aspects behind the astonishing game between Serbia and Albania in 2014. With Albanian fans not permitted to attend the game due to purported safety concerns, the stadium full of Serbian fans echoed racist chants and death threats. Tensions rose to a boil when a drone carrying the Albanian flag flew above the players and onto the pitch. Angered fans rushed the field, attacking the Albanian players, forcing the match to end. A history of political tensions, war and genocide is explored as we follow the journey of the Abanian Naional Team on their first Euro cup appearance. The film is being hosted by the ex-PSG, Sunderland and Marseille footballer Lorik Cana and his 5 Foundation, supporting children in Albania through physical education.

General admission is £25 and VIP tickets are £50 (including a meet and greet with Lorik himself). You can buy them on Eventbrite here. All proceeds go to his foundation. Screening starts at 6p with an afterparty at Flamingo bar in Holborn.


9. Learn more about the global migrant crisis with a talk from Ida-Sofie Picard of LGSMigrants @ Brixton Pound Cafe – Saturday 25th

Still on the Fence? is a series of talks hosted by Fences & Frontiers aimed at increasing awareness around migration and displacement issues. This week, the social enterprise Brixton Pound Café is hosting a talk by Ida-Sofie Picard of Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants, one of the key groups involved in the direct action campaign that prevented the deportation of asylum seekers back in March. In case you didn’t follow the story, the activists locked themselves to the aircraft – a first in the UK – to stop the plane from taking off. Ida-Sofie will discuss the role that creative action can play in the fight for migrants rights, as well as highlighting their wider work.

More details over on Facebook. Talk starts at 2pm.


Join the conversation and find other people going to these events at our Facebook community group: London’s ethical city explorers.


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