PRESS RELEASE October 12th 2015

PAC45 Young Roots Project wins Heritage Lottery Fund support

Today, First Cut Media, THE PAC45 Foundation and the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Education Trust have received £34,800 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for an exciting project, “PAC45 Young Roots” in Manchester. Led by young people from the local community, the project focuses on the heritage of the 1945 Pan African Congress held in Manchester and makes connections with world events today, as discussed at the PAC45 Conference in Manchester, 16-18 October 2015.

Between 15-20 young people will participate in the PAC45 Conference, conduct interviews and receive audio-visual production, post production and online publishing training. They will play a key role in producing a TV documentary programme, web pages and social media about Pan-Africanism in the world today. The young people will use the knowledge and skills they gain to become heritage advocates; making heritage more accessible and relevant to the needs and interests of other young people and huge online audiences. The project will culminate with a celebration screening event at the end of January 2016.

Decisions taken at the 1945 5th Pan African Congress ultimately led to the liberation of the African Nations (at the time only Ethiopia and Liberia were independent). The political consciousness in Manchester was very strong and people of African descent brought together delegates from all over the world to make resolutions for justice and equality. Working with heritage professionals from the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Education Trust, the PAC45 Young Roots participants will gain a deeper insight into the historic 5th Pan African Congress, as well as learning new digital media skills for their careers.

Commenting on the award, First Cut Media Chairperson Ian Johns said: “We give thanks for the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund. The Young Roots project will be broadcasting the bigger picture: Cultural education promotes participation in our liberation. Manchester hosted the most significant 5th PAC in 1945 and now 70 years on this opportunity will help young people to raise their consciousness to be proud of their African heritage and to engage in reshaping the future of Pan-Africanism.”

Explaining the importance of the HLF support, the head of the HLF in the North West, Sara Hilton, said: “Thanks to National Lottery players we’re delighted to support this project which marks the 70th anniversary of an incredibly important international event as well as celebrating its regional links and exploring the lasting legacy it has had for our communities. This project is a wonderful opportunity for the young people of Manchester to gain skills, get creative with their new found knowledge and connect with their heritage.”