We all have a story to tell and we should all try to share that story so others may be inspired, as I was today.

'Life, Loss, Learning and Legacy' Screening Event with Womenzone. 26 May 2021 , 1-2.30pm 

What happened, what we learnt.

An online Screening event to watch a set of 3 video-stories made in 2021 by storytellers from Womenzone on the ‘Life, Loss, Learning and Legacy’ Project (4Ls) , followed by an opportunity for reflection and conversation. The aim of this event was to raise awareness of personal stories of loss, encourage conversations around loss and bereavement. Through sharing their  stories, women hope to reduce stigma around talking about loss and encourage others to feel supported and connected by their story.

28 attendees joined this evening session, (and we heard that lots of other women at Womenzone were logged on watching other devices!) It was a real intergenerational mix, with young adults, older women and men - family members, friends and colleagues of Storytellers and professionals. We were also joined by Leeds Community Foundation and the Longleigh Foundation who both support the 4Ls as funders. There were new members of the public too who joined us- many new faces, and names, who we hadn't met before and hope to meet again. This month, people zoomed in from Leeds, Bradford, Netherlands and more!

All 3 videostories watched in today’s session were produced by storytellers on the 4Ls Project in Jan-March 2021. These videos were recorded, edited and produced by the women, with support from 4Ls team, completely via Zoom

Tahera https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQYkevvhNeI

Shabana https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bww66RkukEc

Rubina https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKnW64Os0ts


“Loss impacts everyone in a multitude of different ways. Moving from one continent to another, establishing roots and leaving one's home country I'm imagining involves huge loss that takes courage and bravery...so grateful to gain further layers of understanding through listening to the storytellers.”

Here are just some of the conversations that were had by attendees, 

‘Makes me value my own parents while they’re alive’.Tahera’s story made me think of my own relationship with my parents, and their own ‘story of survival’ to make it to this country. It was a really brave step for our parents and grandparents generation to move to the UK, doing jobs like working the buses, textiles, mills, factories. Now, I look at the privilege I have in my life, and see the things to be  grateful for that they never had. The photos in Tahera's story really helped me understand this - like her father in front of the buses.”

‘Family were our community’ “Back in those days, we didn't have professional organisations or support workers, our family were our community, and we relied on them for support. Nowadays its different, and it's important that in turn, organisations know how they can best support communities.”

‘Loss as a parent’ “Rubina’s story has related to me and my own experience of caring for my children. When you have a child with a diagnosed or undiagnosed learning disability, it can be hard to share your feelings or emotions with others, even your closest friends. Sometimes you can feel a loss - a loss of freedoms once had, a loss of physical connection that doesn’t exist with a child. Being able to take self-care is very important.”

‘Take our children's merits differently.’ “Rubina’s story has shown me it's important to realise that our children are all different and we must learn from them, adapt with them, for them, and it's us that should change our ways, not them. We will grow together and be stronger because of it.”

‘Cultural practices of loss in Islam’ “ In our culture [the muslim community] we often are consumed by the cultural rituals associated with when someone dies. For example we focus on the burial of the body. But it's easy to lose the humane experience of loss too. Also with covid-19 I feel there's been alot of confusion around how we can grieve and what we can and can’t do. Your 4Ls videos really help to show the beauty and the essence of life, and the memories, and have captured the legacy of that person, and celebrate that person.”

Attendees comments during event

“It’s inspiring to hear these stories of learning and growth and makes me think more positively about my experiences. Thank you all”

“Beautiful photos MashaAllah”

“Inspiring stories ladies - thank you so much for sharing and thank you Lippy People for putting on such an impactful project”

“Really powerful stories have been shared, which to some extent have resonated with my life experiences. Learning from other's stories of resilience helps me to deal with difficult times and puts my experiences into context. Thanks everyone”

“Thank you so much for the invite - it’s been wonderful to listen to the stories - from each one many lessons are learned - and to hear the conversation around the stories. I’m full of admiration for the courage and willingness of those who have shared their stories with us this afternoon. Thank you!”

“Thank you for sharing your personal stories and for this project. Maybe something like this  that could be done in The Netherlands too in the future!”

“Lippy People can be congratulated on delivering the first event that I’ve attended in Leeds in which I felt that one of our diverse communities was fully represented and engaged. Through skilful moderation by Lippy People, the south asian women presenters and their supportive fellow attendees came to own the event and I think that everyone who was present found empathy with them and their community. Well done Lippy People and the presenters.”