Unveiling of the new Sucoteto wreath of remembrance, hope and healing

A new wreath created to signify remembrance, hope and healing from racial troubles has been unveiled at a special ceremony.

Ruth South with the Sucoteto wreath unveiled at a ceremony in Wolverhampton
Ruth South with the Sucoteto wreath unveiled at a ceremony in Wolverhampton

The brown, white and red Sucoteto ring is an acronym of the goods farmed by historically enslaved peoples featuring sugar, cotton, coffee, cocoa, tea and tobacco. The design features the cotton flower, a sugar cube and a red dot representing lives lost.

Wolverhampton Central Seventh Day Adventist Pathfinders lead the procession

It was the brainchild of Ruth South, of CARE – Communities Against Racism Enterprise and was unveiled at a civic event at Wolverhampton's Seventh Day Adventist Church, in Warwick Street.

She came up with the idea of the Sucoteto wreath as a tool for change to honour the empire slaves, the efforts of abolitionists such as William Wilberforce to end the transatlantic slave trade which saw around 12 million Africans transported to the Americas and victims of injustice.

Guests at the service included Mayor of Wolverhampton Councillor Sandra Samuels, Professor Sir Geoff Palmer, of who gave the keynote address and the United States Adventist association secretary Geoff Brown who joined by video link and Walsall poet Ian Henery.

Sir Geoff Palmer

The procession was led by the Pathfinder's troop.

"It was a really good event and a fantastic day. It wasn't just about remembering victims of racial injustice, it was also about honouring those white abolitionists, who were mainly white Christians, who fought to change things.

"It is recognising that we have a shared history however unpleasant some parts of the experience has been," said Mrs South.

Prints of the wreath and flower are on sale costing £5 each and its international launch will be on July 31 when wellwishers are being asked to place copies on windows and doors as a sign of support.

There are also plans for it to be used as part of the Birmingham Commonwealth Games celebrations and taken to be school assemblies from next term.

For more details about the initiative and to order prints of the wreath email via info@care1brp.com.

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