What is #FreeTheTea and what impact does it have?
Put simply, #FreeTheTea is about ordinary people like you and I rebuilding our communities from the ground up. A cup of tea and a chat is always a good place to start.
#FreeTheTea is not so much about the tea itself (it can be coffee, a sandwich, a piece of cake or a meal as long as it’s something you can share), it’s about what it creates – an opportunity to play a part in rebuilding community, getting to know your neighbours, forging relationships, making connections, sharing stories, talking to someone you’d never usually engage with, supporting someone who’s struggling or being supported yourself. Ultimately, sitting down with our fellow human beings over a cuppa can only make our world a better place. We are all equal over a cup of tea, in that moment our humanity is all that matters.
#FreeTheTea has the same message and intention as our CommuniTea events – strengthening community and connecting people – but #FreeTheTea can be set up in any environment, with no major planning needed and absolutely anyone can initiate it.
Too many things in our society have become about money, tea should not be one of them. In so many cultures, including our own, tea is all about coming together and so we have to harness the positive power of tea to bring people together in a society that’s trying to pull us all apart.
What’s our part in #FreeTheTea?
As we continue to travel the UK, we’ll be doing what has always come naturally to us as a family – making tea, drinking it with people and having a good chat. We’ve always had a ‘doors always open and kettles always hot’ policy and some of our closest friendships have been forged over a cuppa. It makes a difference to everyone who knows that they can pop down any time for a chat and we all benefit from the sense of community and support it creates.
Tea drinking and nattering plays a huge part in the purpose of our journey – rebuilding community. As we travel, we’ll be having conversations with a diverse variety of people about community and what it means to them which we intend to capture using videos and recordings and then use them to paint a picture made up of stories, experiences, thoughts and ideas from people of all backgrounds, generations and walks of life (all over free tea, of course).
Along the way, we’ll share these stories on our social media and from them we aim to find solutions and hope, identify and address the problems and give people new perspectives on what’s important, the way we live our lives and our future.
We want to discover what exactly community looks like in the 21st century, what it feels like, how it changes lives and saves lives, what happens when we lose it or no longer value it. Once we understand it, perhaps then we can start to rebuild our communities with more confidence.
If we can do all that over a cuppa and a chat, what could you do?
How can you get involved in #FreeTheTea?
Getting involved with #FreeTheTea is easy. Simply sit down and have a cuppa with someone and see what comes from it! You can do this with any amount of people in any space and environment – at your house, at work, in your street, at a festival, in a marketplace – be creative. Then take a photo of you and a new friend, make a little video or write a post about what coming together over a cuppa means to you or the difference it’s made in your life and use the hashtag #FreeTheTea to be part of our campaign. As a local cafe or restaurant, you can also join in with #FreeTheTea to bring people together, forge new relationships, reduce social isolation and play a part in strengthening your local community. Make your tea free once a month or week, it will hardly cost you anything and it makes a huge difference. Tag us in and we’ll share your #FreeTheTea contribution on our page.
When you #FreeTheTea, you free the power and potential of human connection too.
If you’d like us to come have tea with you or if you have a message about community and what it means to you, let us know through our get in touch page/social media and we can either arrange to meet in person or you can send us your story and we’ll share it on our platform.