Colors: Blue Color

The Commonwealth Secretariat and NO MORE Foundation are launching a new “Join The Chorus” initiative to help the 54 member countries tackle an alarming rise in domestic and sexual violence during the COVID-19 pandemic while urging leaders to make prevention a top priority in rebuilding efforts.

Unveiled today at a virtual event on the margins of the 2021 UN General Assembly (UNGA) session, the initiative, part of the Commonwealth Says NO MORE campaign, offers governments, non-profits and the public new tools and strategies to expand coordinated action to prevent and stop domestic and sexual violence in their countries, communities and homes across the world.

This year’s Yo! Summer Festival, organised by the City of Wolverhampton Council, was a great success with thousands of children and young people taking part in a wide range of fun days, sporting activities and holiday clubs across the city.

Held over the summer holidays, visitors enjoyed over 500 different activities ranging from the unique walking, running and rolling game Beat the Street, which saw nearly 10,000 residents travel a combined 60,000 miles in total, through to meeting dinosaurs from Jurassic Earth as part of the Relight Festival in West Park.

With 45 per cent in the Midlands admitting to picking up bad habits generally during the pandemic, dog experts are warning that these are translating to puppy buying and creating a damaging long-term legacy.

New research released by The Kennel Club as part of its #BePuppywise campaign, shows that post-lockdown, more than a quarter (28 per cent) of those in the Midlands admit that it’s ‘normal’ and ‘easier’ to meet a puppy virtually, rather than in person, enabling more scammers and rogue breeders to disguise horrific breeding conditions and dupe owners, resulting in a backwards step for dog welfare.

The West Midlands Metro network will be extended in Walsall, Birmingham, Dudley, Sandwell and Wolverhampton under a wide-ranging plan to revolutionise transport across the region.

Further investment would see rail stations opened, new rapid bus services launched, lower fares, more zero-emission vehicles, a very light rail line in Coventry and miles of safe cycling routes created to support the region’s economic growth and its #wm2041 net-zero carbon targets.

Organisers have announced the first details of the Birmingham 2022 Festival - a six month celebration which will spotlight creativity and culture in the West Midlands. Running from March to September 2022 as part of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, the festival will feature hundreds of creative commissions across the region including art, photography, dance, theatre, digital art and more. 

Members of the public are urged to register at birmingham2022.com/festival to be amongst the first to discover the full programme when it is unveiled in January.