Welcome to the FUSION Toolbox. (Sign found at Lowlands Festival.) Photo by Holger Jan Schmidt
Festivals are fun!
The term “festival” is originated from “Festa” in Latin, which means “feast”. And it is a feast indeed. A feast of music, fun, meeting with new people and simply enjoying oneself.
Festivals are experiences that contribute to self-development.
Music festivals can be considered learning spaces in a number of ways. And many are more than “just” a collection of concerts; they offer art installations, performances, workshops, activities and even lectures on a variety of topics that go well beyond music and the music industry. This programme provides attendees with valuable knowledge and skills that contribute to their personal and professional development.
Additionally, with increased mobility, festivals can serve as a space for people to travel to places that they would not otherwise, to learn about different cultures and musical styles, as many festivals feature a very diverse lineup of artists from around the world.
Finally, it is a space that brings together a very diverse group of people with similar cultural tastes, allows them to interact with one another and share and discover each other's experiences and insights.
Flags at Wacken:Open:Air World Metal Camp. Photo by Holger Jan Schmidt
You are about to enter the FUSION Toolbox
To make this learning experience more efficient and organized, we have prepared this toolbox for NGOs and festivals. Its purpose is to assist and provide guidance and ideas by asking important questions. The answers to these questions should guide NGOs and festivals from the creation of a social innovation project to the implementation and evaluation of it. You don’t need to answer the questions right now – but if you prepare a project to take place at a festival, it’s for your own benefit to find answers to them in the planning process.Enter the Toolbox
The toolbox is for all individuals who would like to tap into the potential that festival spaces hold for social innovation. You can be from both sides of the cooperation; you can belong to an NGO that would like to use already existing festivals to realize its ideas, or you can be a festival organizer who would like to enhance the experience of their festival’s attendees.
Please note that in this toolbox, we use “NGO” as an umbrella term for all non-governmental organizations (NGOs), youth organizations, civil society organizations (CSOs), organizations working with young people, non-profit organizations, associations etc.
In this toolbox, you will find a glossary and eight stages, each dedicated to a specific phase of the planning process. The questions we ask are not exclusive and conclusive; based on your own experience, your own aims and objectives and on your own reality, you will need to go beyond them. The questions here offer the starting point, some direction to follow. What you will find and what you will create is completely up to you... Just like the festival experience is unique, your project will also be unique.
This toolbox is also under constant construction and development. In time, we will expand the questions asked, examples provided and the sources included. So, once you get your project running, please share your experiences and outcomes with us. Let us grow together.
Now, let's start with the first question of many to come:
Are you ready?