Blog PostEquality

Processions for Equality

On Friday 1st June Young Scot staff members, together with YOYP2018 Ambassadors came together to create a banner for the Processions march in Edinburgh; marking 100 years of women’s votes.

Processions was one of the UK’s largest ever mass participation artworks, which took place simultaneously across the four UK capitals, including Edinburgh, on 10th June 2018, to mark one hundred years since the first British women won the right to vote.

Women and girls – including those who identify as women and non-binary individuals – took part in this once-in-a-lifetime living artwork which celebrated a historic moment for gender equality and created a dramatic portrait of women in the 21st century.

In the lead up to the workshop, our YOYP Ambassadors were asked to submit suggestions for a big word or phrase to capture the message of young female empowerment to be displayed on the banner. We decided on #WomenCAN and agreed to celebrate our inspirational young Scots by using the faces of Young Scot award finalists and MyStory365 participants to make up the phrase.

The banner, made almost exclusively of donated materials and recycled fabrics, boasted elements of diversity and celebrated solidarity amongst women by using a range of different colours and textures to create a crowd of female figures.

Using the Suffragette flag as the background, the group also discussed other ways in which the suffragettes and suffragists who dedicated their lives to fighting for equality could be acknowledged through the artwork. We displayed the names of these prominent and inspiring women with handwritten tags tied to each pole holding up the banner, reminding us of their courage and tenacity over a century ago.

Erin-Rose, aged 9 from Edinburgh said: “I did the 100 year anniversary for homework and learned more about it so when this opportunity [banner making workshop] came up I wanted to go because I thought it looked really fun. The best thing about the women is theyΒ didn’t just stop trying, and I’m proud to be a part of this because it’s like I’m continuing their work.”

On Sunday 10th June, Young Scot staff and YOYP Ambassadors joined thousands of women and girls marching through the streets of Edinburgh to mark 100 years of women’s votes. The Processions event formed a huge public artwork celebrating a century since the first British women could vote.

Each participant was offered a coloured sash – green, white or violet – to represent the colours of the suffragette movement and separated into lanes to form flowing rivers of colour through the streets of the city. Marching the same route as those fighting for the right to vote in 1918, the enormous human banner paid tribute to the fearless and inspiring women who helped shape Britain for the future generations.

YOYP Ambassadors from across Scotland made the journey to Edinburgh to proudly display their banner and march with the thousands of other women and girls who came together to create their own unique artwork for the event.

While marching, the Ambassadors helped produce a short video with their message for the Young Scot social media followers across the country.