The Milton Keynes Islamic Arts, Heritage and Culture (MKIAC) held the “Commonwealth Big Arty Lunch” event at MK College to celebrate the rich diversity of the Commonwealth, which was attended by 60 delegates.
The event on Wednesday 28th March was held by the MKIAC in conjunction with the Eden Project Big Commonwealth Lunch, and took place at Milton Keynes College Bletchley Campus’ on-site restaurant “The Brassiere”.
Milton Keynes College students catered for the event and served a Commonwealth inspired Menu. This included Spicy Malaysian style fish cooked in banana leaves infused with coconut milk and Cypriot cheese served followed by Australian Kiwi Pavlova accompanied by English Elderflower Fizz.
The morning consisted of welcome speeches by MKIAC Patron Countess Elizabeth Howe and MKIAC director Anouar Kassim MBE, followed by a speech on “Commonwealth environment and business opportunities” by Sarah Poopola.
Susan Popoola, commented Anouar and MKIAC, does a stellar job of representing the people representing the wider diversity of our community as demonstrated by the participants of the Commonwealth Big Lunch.
There then was an opportunity for delegates to learn or showcase their mosaic skills through an artist led session to produce a large mosaic depicting the Commonwealth flag.
After this was speeches by the Mayor of Milton Keynes and the vice Lord Lieutenant, who spoke about the role of the commonwealth it’s history, goals, relevance, values and future plans.
Alexander Boswell, Her Majesty’s Vice Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire, commented “Of all the Queen’s great achievements, the development of the Commonwealth of Nations is likely to stand out as one of her greatest. Drawing together a third of the world’s population in a shared spirit of peace, harmony and mutual understanding makes for a remarkable legacy.
“The Charter of the Commonwealth aspires to the highest principles for humanity. The Commonwealth is a truly significant force for good in this troubled world.”
Like many others around the globe at this time, MK’s Commonwealth Big Lunch was a joyous celebration of the diversity, mutual respect and values of this great institution.
Delegates and dignities came from across Milton Keynes representing commonwealth countries: Pakistan, India, Caribbean, Africa, Hong Kong, and England. The event was a colourful spectacular as many delegates wore traditional dress.
The Commonwealth Big Lunch was supported by Big lottery “One Journey Connecting communities programme.”