A Global Grassroots Sing-Along for Human Rights

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Location: A public space in your community… anywhere in the world!

Love and kindness are needed now more than ever in our world. In this spirit, ordinary people around the world will gather on Saturday, December 10 – International Human Rights Day – to sing songs of inclusion and empathy!

Local residents at the grassroots level in hamlets, towns and cities across Canada… and around the world… are creating sing-along events as a way of asserting their commitment to universal human rights and to an empathic approach towards dealing with others.

They’ll be singing the song that gave this event its name – “Circle of Song” by Canadian songwriter Tony Turner – along with other songs that celebrate and affirm the dignity and worth of everyone.

People need encouragement at this time! These sing-along events will radiate support and reassurance towards all who feel threatened by hatred. By singing together, participants will indicate that they are on the side of love and kindness, ready to listen to, learn from and include everyone, regardless of differences.

Event Template

1. Tasks for Local Organizers. Participatory singing is at the centre of this project! Now more than ever, we all need to combine our voices in song to lift people’s spirits and provide hope!! Here are the things local organizers can do:

(1) arrange a space and time for a December 10th sing-along event;
(2) issue an open call to musicians and/or choirs who would like to perform;
(3) direct participants to the song lyrics and sound files for “Circle of Song” and other great sing-along songs at www.circleofsong.ca.
(4) create a schedule of performances;
(5) publicize the event in various ways in advance;
(6) arrange for amplification if necessary (this could be a small AC-powered sound system or a battery-powered amplifier with a few microphone and guitar inputs);
(7) arrange for live video from the event to be broadcast to Facebook pages using the free “Facebook Live” feature.

The organizer’s first duty is to provide sing-along attendees with an enjoyable, uplifting, participatory experience. The quality of the singing is less important than making sure that everyone is included and is able to participate.

An important way to increase the impact of this sing-along project is to publicize it in a variety of ways before, during and after December 10th. Please go to www.circleofsong.ca for publicity materials and suggestions about how to spread the word.

2. Community Idea Exchange. At one or two sides of the audience space, consider providing space for local NGO’s, individuals and groups who want to share ideas or ask for public support. They should be offered “Open Space” where people are free to come and go, hear their messages and subscribe to their sign-up sheets and the like. Ideally, these organizations will respect the positive, inclusive intent of the “Circle of Song” project.

3. Food and Drink. If permissible where you will be gathering, allowing/encouraging food and drink vendors to set up at the periphery will enable more people to come and stay, instead of having to leave when they are hungry or thirsty. Even just having water – preferably not in disposable containers – will help a lot.

4. Closing. Consider closing the event with these thoughts:

May I be at peace.
May my heart remain open.
May I realize the beauty of my own true nature.
May I be healed.
May I be a source of healing for this world.

May you be at peace.
May your heart remain open.
May you realize the beauty of your own true nature.
May you be healed.
May you be a source of healing for this world.