Significant events in the recent history of REVI

10th Anniverary celebration

Chairman of Braintree District Council attends REVI’s 10th Anniversary celebrations

For photos please visit our facebook photo gallery HERE or scroll down the page to view the slideshow.

Cllr Vanessa Santomauro joined REVI stakeholders, volunteers past and present in Braintree Town Hall on Wednesday 19th September, to celebrate a special occasion in a local charity’s history - its 10th Anniversary!

The celebration was such a significant event for REVI that the original three Community Development Workers travelled from far and wide to be there on the night! It is a testament to the local community that a charitable organisation focused on promoting the ‘Real & Enthusiastic Voice of Integration’, which REVI stands for, celebrates its tenth birthday this year.

In 2007, a new migrant workers project started that covered the Braintree District, Uttlesford District and East Hertfordshire.  The project employed three Community Development Workers, Anna Szwagiel, Małgorzata Strona and Monika Wodecka who were given the task to identify the needs of the largest migrant community and make it self-sustainable.

The group decided to choose a name and after several long discussions, REVI was chosen. REVI comes from Esperanto and means “a dream”.  In 2008, the group signed its constitution and since then REVI has participated in many events all over Essex. Today REVI has four projects: a Polish Children’s Club, a Polish Youth Club, a NEW Polish Toddlers Club and a Multicultural Forum. What is remarkable is that each initiative is built on community spirit: they all involve volunteers, donating their free time to share their knowledge and skills in order to create an environment that young people can develop their confidence, friendships and cultural know-how.

REVI has become a vibrant thread in the local cultural tapestry and we hope it is going to continue bringing colour and joy to all for many more years to come. Happy Birthday REVI!

To read about the event, as reported by Braintree and Witham Times, click here.

5th Polish Day at George Yard

On Saturday 8th September 2018 Polish tastes took over the band stand at George Yard in Braintree. It all started when REVI, a local charity promoting diversity, got an idea to promote the cultural vibrancy of Polish residents in the area. They put a plan together and pitched it to Celia Dunlop at George Yard.

That first Saturday was so successful that it became an annual event and last week we enjoyed it for the fifth time in as many years! With a records-breaking number of exhibitors, the public got a chance to taste freshly-baked cakes, sample famous sausages, admire traditional attire, even try on some shoes. It was a good opportunity for local businesses to show the face behind the brand, and – judging by the number of conversation had on the day – it was taken full advantage of by the public. It was a nice way of meeting representatives of George Yard and local library as well.

It was a grand day out. If you missed it this time, the next Polish Day at George yard is just a year away. 


Laying of Wreath at Audley End House

On Sunday 19th November REVI will lay a wreath at the Polish War Memorial, Audley End House. Polish Members of the Special Operations Executive trained at Audley End between 1942 and 1944, and this Memorial, near the Lion Gate in West Park, commemorates the achievements of those who parachuted into occupied Poland.


Other Events:

  1. 5th December 2017: Talk on Victorian Christmas at The Hawthorns, Braintree

  2. Polish Day 2017: REVI organised its annual event at George Yard, Braintree on Saturday 9th September, 10:00 - 14:00. Stallholders included: OWL Finance, one of the UK's largest networks of financial advisers; Miss Iwona Kaminska, photographs on canvas, particularly of the Kaszuby Forest, Poland; The Coffee Tree, a cafe in Braintree; Apple Fit Baby Boot-ik, shoes for girls & boys; Mrs. Agnieszka Zaba, handicrafts fashioned using the traditional Japanese Kanzashi method; Inspired Crafts, handmade decoupage gifts; Mr. Alojzy Dul, sculptures in linden wood; Polcraft, promoting Polish artists and their work; Londoni, a qualified freelance Florist; Braintree Library, with multicultural books. In addition to local Polish food from The Coffee Tree, visitors were also treated to Polish Dance and Karate Demonstrations by REVI's Volunteers.
  3. Talk on Diwali Festival at The Hawthorns Retirement Village, Braintree
  4. Talk on Polish traditions at the Rotary Club in Witham
    This event was even reported by the Braintree and Witham Times, link to the article can be found here.
  5. Polish Heritage Day: A new initiative of the Polish Embassy, London inviting a celebration of openness, appreciation and better understanding between the Polish Community and the wider British Society. The Annual Event took place on 6th - 7th May. The Logo is based on the white-and-red chequerboard design painted on Polish aeroplanes during the 1940 Battle of Britain. During that Battle Polish Pilots constituted the second largest Allied contingent after the British. During WWII and a subsequent period of Communism, the UK was the refuge of the Polish Government-in-Exile and Free Poles. The Polish Community also includes people who moved to Britain after Poland joined the European Union in 2004. Children from REVI's Polish Children's Club made flags to celebrate the occasion.
  6. International Day of Happiness: In 2011 the UN General Assembly recognised happiness as a 'fundamental human goal' and called for 'a more inclusive, equitable and balanced approach to Economic growth that promotes the happiness and well-being of all peoples'. In 2012 the first UN Conference on Happiness took place and the UN General Assembly decreed that the International Day of Happiness would be observed every year on 20th March. Happiness Day, founded on 28/06/2012 with the unanimous adoption of UN Resolution 66/281, saw Illien Global Partner with Action for Happiness in 2017 at the World Happiness Summit. It was celebrated for the first time in 2013. In 2017 children from REVI's Polish Children's Club, Braintree designed a Happy T-Shirt to mark the occasion.