‘Join Hands for Ukraine’, 31st July 2022

To emphasise European Unity between the peoples of Europe we took the opportunity to create a People Ring at the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday afternoon, 31st July 2022 to show the people of the UK (as distinct to the Government) stand beside the people of Ukraine. Together with our partner organisations, we formed a human chain which became a Ring, and, through both standing in silent tribute to those who have died, and applause for those resisting, we showed we stand with all Ukrainians in their hour of need.

The Tribute with the Sunflower Quilt held around the Ring
Star of European Unity

A single star is recognised as an effective non-national symbol for any European country.   We have created a 2m diameter physical 5-pointed gold star – decorated with symbols to represent the ideals of the EU – to be a ‘talisman’ for those in the UK who want to live in a community of nations and abide by these ideals.  We call this ‘UK’s Star of European Unity’ or simply ‘Our Star’.

The physical star has two sides, each presenting a different perspective of our values and ideals.   Both sides include the Circle of Stars that appears on the Flag of Europe with colour reversed to reflect our changed European status.  Inside the Circle of Stars, on one side called ‘Peace Star’, a flock of doves holding olive branches fly above, representing Peace and Friendship towards all nations. Others are resting below on each leg, representing Peace at home, within the Union.  On the other side called ‘Unity Star’, the ‘People Ring’ symbolizes the citizens, their rights, diversity and equality of all people, holding hands to represent harmony and unity between them.  

Sincere Education and Cultural Development is UK based charity organisation that provides educational and social support for talented children in Ukraine and abroad, including vulnerable children and children with disabilities. They host the Sunflower Quilt in the UK. This has been made from 9000 patches by an Australian artist, Janno McLaughlin, with patches donated by people worldwide and is destined for display in Kyiv. It was shown for the first time in Europe at this event.

The Ring included many European nationalities, especially the Ukraine diaspora and refugees acknowledging the wide support for Ukraine. Members of the public found the event very emotional and moving.