September 2011, Issue 12

Dear Friend,

I hope you are all well and have had a good Ramadan and a happy Eid. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by the terrible famine in East Africa.

We are delighted to announce the launch of the Dialogue Society’s Community Dialogue Manuals. The Community Dialogue Manuals suggest 65+ ideas and projects (35+ are detailed and dialogue related), total 650 pages, contain 100+ sample documents and include 200+ references to other helpful websites and resources. Supported by the Department of Communities and Local Government, the ten manuals are intended to inspire enthusiasm for dialogue and to provide the tangible ideas, know-how and resources to make effective dialogue projects achievable. They provide a helping hand to any group or individual interested in bringing their community together and increasing interaction between people of different cultures and faiths.

The manuals consist of the following titles: Building Partnerships, Noah’s Pudding, Celebrating Festivals, Community Fairs, Community Engagement Dinners, Community Centres Branching Out, Speed Dialogue, Open Mosque Day, Fast-Breaking Dinners, and Media Engagement.

The pdf versions are now available on our website and we invite you to make full use of them and to spread the word to any contacts who may benefit from the advice and support they provide. To receive free hard copies email

The summer has also seen the launch of the Dialogue Society London Trips, which provide participants with an opportunity to visit a range of significant cultural, religious and historic sites, sharing as a group a vivid experience of the rich heritage and eclectic contemporary life of an exceptionally multicultural city. It is hoped that the trips will encourage positive citizenship and promote understanding and appreciation of cultural and religious diversity. The project will particularly target communities that tend to be insular, Londoners who have had limited opportunities to explore the city’s cultural heritage, underprivileged communities, intercultural groups and overseas groups. For further information on the trips and on how to propose a group for a trip, or to join a group, please see the London Trips webpage.

Our programme of events for 2010-2011 ended at the beginning of July. Our 2011-2012 programme is now commencing and we look forward to hosting you at a range of events. Key projects for the new programme include the London Trips, “Making Dialogue Effective” discussions around the country and the new Success School, which is intended to inspire young people from all backgrounds to aim high and fulfil their potential. Watch this space for news on further events.

Some of our events will be taking place at a brand new branch in Manchester, led by Branch Director Dr Mustafa Kayikci. We look forward to the further development of the Dialogue Society’s work in the north of England through this branch. We are also looking forward to hosting the first intake of Dialogue Studies MA students for an internship at our London Offices.

This academic year promises to be a busy and exciting one for us. We hope that you will be able to get involved with our projects in the near future, and that all your own undertakings progress successfully this autumn.

Warmest Regards
Ozcan Keles
Executive Director
Dialogue Society

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Launch of Community Dialogue Manuals

The Dialogue Society is delighted to announce the launch of our ten Community Dialogue Manuals. The series aims to inspire and assist people to bring their local communities together through a number of approaches and events that the Dialogue Society has found successful. We hope that they will be of interest to community groups, religious groups, private individuals, local authorities and companies who wish to facilitate interaction between different community groups.

The series consists of the following titles: Building Partnerships, Noah’s Pudding, Celebrating Festivals, Community Fairs, Community Engagement Dinners, Community Centres Branching Out, Speed Dialogue, Open Mosque Day, Fast-Breaking Dinners, and Media Engagement.

The Community Dialogue Manuals achieve the following:
Inspiring and instilling enthusiasm for dialogue: By suggesting over sixty five ideas and projects for individuals and groups, including thirty five detailed dialogue projects, the manuals inspire and instil interest in and enthusiasm for community dialogue.
Providing a range of tangible ideas: By detailing diverse projects over a total of six hundred and fifty pages, the manuals suggest tangible, achievable projects to suit a range of people and groups.
Disseminating know-how: By guiding readers through every step of the process of planning and organisation through detailed advice, checklists, hints and tips the manuals disseminate know-how in a user-friendly format.
Supporting users through materials: By complementing know-how with over one hundred sample letters, forms and other resources, the manuals support people in the projects they undertake.
Highlighting useful resources: By including over two hundred references to helpful external websites, relevant organisations and publications, the manuals expose users to other resources.

The manuals can be downloaded for free from Hard copies will be distributed this month. To receive free copies email

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Academic Workshop Call for Papers: Debating Multiculturalism

The Dialogue Society, Leeds Branch, in collaboration with Leeds Metropolitan University (UK) and Mevlana University (Konya, Turkey), invites applications from scholars and practitioners willing to exchange ideas on the theory and practice of multiculturalism in an intimate week-long workshop to be held in Konya, the hometown of Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi, from 16th to 22nd April 2012. In the thirteenth century when Rumi flourished, the Konya region was much more culturally and confessionally diverse than it is today. Rumi’s intense spiritual insights and his conception of the religious life encouraged peaceful coexistence on the basis of respect for and engagement with different traditions in shared social and cultural activities. Konya is therefore a fitting venue in which to air the issue of intercultural spaces and possibilities, albeit from a contemporary perspective.
Authors from Britain will present their papers at the workshop and take part in question-and-answer sessions on the relevant issues as they arise in Turkey. The country’s recent record of combining political stability with economic growth and human rights reforms is concentrating minds on the capacity of the present European model of multiculturalism to cope with the eventual accession of Turkey to the EU. In Turkey there is strong interest in the so-called “Anglo-Saxon” practice of secularism as a framework for the evolution of multiculturalism into interculturalism.
The closing date for the submission of conference paper abstracts is 31st October 2011. Further information is available on the Dialogue Society website.

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Launch of Manchester Branch

The Dialogue Society continues to grow. We are very pleased to announce the launch of a Manchester Branch led by Dr Mustafa Kayikci, who was previously engaged in supporting Leeds Branch projects. The new branch will allow the Dialogue Society to develop and expand its work for social cohesion and intercultural dialogue in the Manchester area.
Mustafa’s background is in electrical engineering but he has also been a committed community volunteer since 2002, working for supplementary schools in Manchester and elsewhere in the North West. His enthusiasm for greater understanding between people of different backgrounds led him to the Dialogue Society and as Branch Director he aims to develop bridge-building between communities in Manchester.

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Launch of London Trips

Launch of London Trips, 15/08/11

The Dialogue Society London Trips project aims to provide a range of groups, from London and from further afield, with an inspiring and enjoyable experience of this incredibly diverse and vibrant city. The trips are intended to encourage appreciation of cultural and religious diversity, to promote a sense of pride and citizenship among diverse Londoners and to give participants from abroad insight into British values and approaches to diversity.

The project was launched with an enjoyable and eye-opening excursion with a group of six community leaders from East London. The one-day London trip aimed to explore the diverse historical and religious heritage of London through visits to important cultural, historical and religious sites. The group visited St Paul's cathedral before walking along the South Bank, admiring Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, the Millennium Bridge and the Tate Modern. After a visit to a range of exhibitions in the British museum, the day ended with a meal which gave the group the opportunity to discuss the sites they had seen and share what they had learned during the trip. The participants were keen to involve as many other groups as possible in the project, offering them the opportunity to better understand the historic city in which they live.

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London Community Co-ordinators

Islington Against Famine

Islington Against Famine, 17.09.2011

17.09.2011 - In September, the Somali Community of Islington, together with One True Voice Women’s Organisation and Community Language Support Services, organised an excellent fundraising event for the Disasters Emergency Committee appeal for East Africa. The event featured music by the renowned Somali singer Fuad Omar and other musicians along with speeches from local MP Jeremy Corbyn, the Mayor of Islington Councillor Phil Kelly and Councillor Catherine West. Awards of appreciation were presented to five local Turkish businessmen who donated generously to the appeal, and to our own East London Community Coordinator, Tamer Yigit, for his work in raising awareness and encouraging donations.

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Holloway Ward Partnership Event

20.07.2011 - The Dialogue Society’s East London Community Coordinator, Tamer Yigit, attended a lively partnership networking event arranged by local ward councillors Cllr Barry Edwards, Cllr Paul Smith and Councillor Lucy Rigby at Ringcross Community Centre. It was an excellent opportunity to make helpful connections with a range of organisations providing services in the Holloway area. Over sixty guests attended and there was a great mix of different community groups and statutory services.

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Muslim Welfare House Open Day

Muslim Welfare House Open Day, 16/07/11

16/07/11 - Tamer Yigit attended the Community Open Day of the Muslim Welfare House, a local community centre and registered charity. The open day provided non-Muslims with an opportunity to visit the centre’s mosque, meet with those who worship there and learn about Islam. Well known Muslim scholars gave talks, as did local MP Jeremy Corbyn. It was a successful event and a great example of a community centre focused on a particular religious group opening its doors to welcome visitors of other faiths and none.

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Events London

Civil Service Live

Civil Service Live, 05/07/11-07/07/11

05/07/11-07/07/11 - The Dialogue Society attended Civil Service Live for the first time in July. Civil Service Live is the largest gathering of civil servants, designed to inspire innovation and promote best practice across all government departments and agencies. Staff from our London office manned a stall, attended discussions and were privileged to meet with a range of senior civil servants, including a number of Permanent Private Secretaries. The event gave Dialogue Society representatives a unique opportunity to invite civil servants to join the organisation’s discussions on key social issues. Discussions with a range of civil servants and other stallholders also allowed Dialogue Society staff to identify potential areas of collaboration with those working towards similar goals to our own within the public and private sectors. The event ended with an engaging “Question Time” focused on the challenges of the current economic climate, with Peter Jones from Dragon's Den, Sir Gus O'Donnell, Baroness Hogg and Paula Vennells.

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Events - Durham

Events - Southampton

Events - Manchester

In this issue


Media School - Week 8: Understanding and Using New Media

Media School - Week 8: Understanding and Using New Media





Other news

Past & Forthcoming Events

Visit our Events page to see the number and range of work carried out by the Dialogue Society. Users can view the events in categorical or chronological order.

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Internship at the Dialogue Society

The Dialogue Society is currently offering volunteering placement opportunities for candidates from all backgrounds and interests. We provide a unique, dynamic and stimulating work experience where volunteers are encouraged to plan, build and deliver their own projects whilst contributing to other ongoing projects and tasks.

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Support the Dialogue Society

Regardless of your means and time, there are a number of ways you can support the Dialogue Society. Click below for some practical suggestions.

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Dialogue Society
402 Holloway Road,
London, N7 6PZ

T   + 44 (0) 20 7619 0361

Dialogue Society - 402 Holloway Road, London, N7 6PZ. Ph: +(44) 20 7619 0361