Oxfam HQ Update March 2010

March 19, 2010 by

It’s been an unbelievable busy time in the Oxjam team over the last few weeks. We’ve just recruited the most amazing people to the team – warm welcomes to Julie, Jessica, Adam, Emma, Nina and Kathryn.

We are having a two day induction into Oxjam next week in Oxford which will include the background of why Oxfam is involved with music and how to build on the success of the Oxjam events that have been happening since 2006. Hard task but the passion in the team and from our music event organisers will pay dividends and make for a very exciting October.

We’ve been receiving applications for Oxjam Regional Managers – these roles include building a team in local towns and cities to put on an Oxjam music takeover event. (Think camden crawl).

The applications have been really strong and we are so excited to interview the candidates over the next few weeks to determine where we’ll have Oxjam multi-venue events in October. In addition, we are starting to receive applications for hundreds of individual Oxjam events to happen all across the UK. The creativity of the ideas for the events, as always, inspires us. Check out the home page for all of the information.

The other element that we’re shaping up is to run training events for event organisers in June. These events give Oxjammers a chance to meet peers and contacts and to get advice from music industry experts to make their events successful and raise vital funds for Oxfam.

As always, just drop us a line at oxjam@oxfam.org.uk to get in touch.

All the best, Sarah



January 29, 2010 by

If you’re looking for work experience in the music, management or charity sector then Oxjam 2010 could be the thing for you!

We’re on the hunt for enthusiastic individuals to make the Oxjam Music Festival 2010 the most successful Oxjam ever!

We’re currently recruiting for volunteers, internships and full time positions in the Oxjam Festival team for 2010!

Check out the Oxjam website for more information and details on how to apply…

Oxjam’s back…back again…for Twenty Ten…

January 19, 2010 by

Happy NY…

Happy Twenty Ten Oxjammers, sorry for the belated greetings! It’s been a bit hectic here at HQ over the past couple of weeks because two newbies have joined the team, which has meant lots of introductions, planning meetings, brainstorming exercises and team bonding (and a few snow ball fights along the way!)

I’m one of the aforementioned ‘newbies’. My name’s Lucy and I’ll be looking after Oxjam Communications for 2010. This means I’m responsible for keeping you wonderful people in the know with what’s going on and letting you how you can get more involved in Oxjam. I should also be able to answer any questions you have about Oxjam and holding your own events (fingers crossed!)


Breaking News: How YOU can Get Involved…

Right now, we’re on the hunt for more passionate party people who are looking for music, management or charity work experience to get involved with organising Oxjam 2010 to make it the most successful Oxjam ever! We’re currently recruiting for two roles:

Regional Support Executives are interns who are based in the Oxfam regional offices in either Glasgow, Manchester, Birmingham, Oxford or London.  They are responsible for managing and supporting 5 -10 Oxjam Regional Managers.

Oxjam Regional Managers are given the responsibility to recruit and build a team of volunteers who then create their own Oxjam music festival in October in their local area. This could include up to 100 bands playing in up to 10 venues all on one day.  The team in Leicester last year held a massive event with music ranging from dubstep, drum ‘n’ bass, hip-hop and house to jazz, soul and electro pop. Check out Gemma’s videos of the experience on You Tube.

So if you fancy being involved in the UK’s biggest music festival and at the same time gain invaluable experience in one of the world’s biggest NGOs, then keep sign up on the Oxjam website and keep your eye on the facebook and twitter pages over the coming weeks where the details of how you can apply will be posted soon!

There will be more opportunities to be involved in Oxjam throughout 2010, from running your own bespoke Oxjam event in your local area to organising a huge Oxjam city takeover.


You heard it here first: Limited Edition Oxjam ‘09 Stash!

From Tuesday 19th January (TODAY!) until Tuesday 9th Feb the few remaining Oxjam ’09 T-shirts we have left in stock will go on sale with 50% off their RRP. They’re only £9 down from £18… that’s not even a tenner!

Oxjam T

Great memories, great fit, great Oxjam design, great fair-trade ethics and all the money going to Oxfam – it’s gotta be a winner…

GET YOURS TODAY:  http://www.oxfam.org.uk/shop/results.aspx?search=oxjam+t-shirts

That’s all from me for now.

Oxjam Over and Out.




Oxjam October highlights

November 2, 2009 by

We’ve just finished the most amazing month of music.  From the star-studded launch gigs to the busks, jams and amazing music all dedicated to raising money to fight poverty. The passion and creativity of our volunteers has been unbelievably inspirational. Final totals are still coming in from all of our amazing regional teams but it looks like we will have smashed our fund-raising targets. We can’t wait for Oxjam ’10.

Our highlights include the Oxjam Takeovers which saw over 2000 artists playing in 22 cities from the 23rd-25th October. An eclectic mix of each city’s finest venues played host to every imaginable genre of music, raising heaps of money and awareness for Oxfam and our climate change campaign.

Leicester’s Takeover event was massive, taking over 10 venues in the city centre, with music ranging from dubstep, drum’n’bass, hip-hop and house, to jazz, soul, blues and folk, to indie rock, punk, funk and electro pop!

In Exeter, the Takeover was kick started by an intimate gig from Frank Turner, who played to a packed venue.

Norwich saw punters packing in to venues ranging from the historic Dragon Hall to the incredible Puppet Theatre.

In Cardiff, Ruffstylz broke the world record for the longest ever freestyle rap, clocking up an awe-inspiring 17 hours!

In Oxford, music lovers converged on the Cowley Road for the first ever OX4 Festival. Organised by the guys who brought us the Truck Festival, OX4 showcased some of the best local bands and musicians in multiple venues along the vibrant Cowley Road, to raise money for Oxfam. A sea of painted blue faces wandered between venues searching out their favourite acts and workshops, each of them demanding action until they were blue in the face as part of Oxfam’s climate change campaign.

A simply amazing month of music dedicated to fighting poverty.

The Oxjam Ball

October 15, 2008 by

We decided to kick this years Oxjam off in style here at Oxfam house in Oxford…literally.

We had a weeks worth of activities including a guitar hero competition in the Atrium of the building, where us office bods got the chance to strap on an “axe” and rock out to our favourite soft rock anthems. £1 a play.

We also had a lunchtime talk were we explained all the going ons, and the ins and outs of Oxjam this year. Plus, we took a stock of the finest evening wear kindly donated from the local Oxfam shops to sell in the Atrium in preperation for the Oxjam ball at Friday lunchtime!

I actually managed to buy myself a rather fetching grey pinstripe suit for £20, which is quite surprising considering I can’t find clothes to fit me in topshop.

People also got a chance to buy a raffle ticket to win a bottle of bubbly at the end of the week.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2943459383/” title=”Oxjam Ball 08 (3) by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3038/2943459383_7175a6aab0_b.jpg” width=”1024″ height=”683″ alt=”Oxjam Ball 08 (3)” /></a>

Then on Friday we were very lucky to have the fabulous Pavlova Wind Quintet (http://www.pavlovaquintet.co.uk/) come and perform in Oxfam’s reception – greeting employees as they entered the building. What a great start to the day, and to show people that Oxjam’s not all about indie music!

Then at lunchtime Oxfam’s own ceiledh (I’m never quite sure how to spell that) band performed a selection of all your highland favourites while Oxfam employees and volunteers took a well earned break from their work and flung themselves around the conference rooms.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2943457875/” title=”Oxjam Ball 08 (22) by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3160/2943457875_7611769dd9_b.jpg” width=”1024″ height=”683″ alt=”Oxjam Ball 08 (22)” /></a>

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2943458187/” title=”Oxjam Ball 08 (20) by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3168/2943458187_c1be0646a9_b.jpg” width=”1024″ height=”683″ alt=”Oxjam Ball 08 (20)” /></a>

All in all we managed to raise £140, and spread a lot of awareness of Oxjam.

And, it didn’t stop there. The Oxjam after party continued in the Marsh Harrier (local pub) where they were invaded by 50 evening wear attired Oxfam employees and volunteers…which I don’t have any pictures of fortunately.

Oxjam Regional Managers training weekend (part deux)

September 18, 2008 by

So, we finally got to meet the rest of our beautiful and exotic Oxjam Regional Managers. We were joined in the exclusive YHA in London by people from as far afield as and the Isle of Wight!

Most people arrived on the Friday night for a few quiet ones in the hostel bar and the pub around the corner. The team bonding was a bit too succesful and for a handful (who shall remain nameless) the “few” turned into double figures before closing time. The more sensible among us got an early night, only to be awakened by the fire alarm at 2am…I wonder who that was..hmm??

We picked up with a nice early breakfast (8.45 on the dot) to begin training at 9.30. Much the same as the last session we covered Oxfam, Oxjam, and then were really lucky to be joined by Mary Saunders (an Oxfam shop manager) who had been on an exposure tour to Bangladesh, and had some pretty inspiring pictures and stories to tell us about.

Oh, I didn’t mention that our projector broke first thing and Benny (the man legend!) got his daily excerise by running around to local currys superstores looking for replacement bulbs, but to no avail.

We then had a quick workshop about how you generate and maintain a good team environment, with some really useful outputs. We identified that keeping your team meetings regular and creating a good social environment are some of the most important things keeping your team together/

Claire then led an interactive session on how to recruit event organisers. The groups came away with a solid, practical plan on how to recruit Oxjam music event organisers in their areas.

One of the great things about these sessions is just the great diversity of people who come to them, which such a huge spectrum of experiences and skills. It was great to see people thinking about the same problems in completely different ways, and one of our challenges is going to be making sure that all this learning and experienced is shared within the volunteer network.

We finished a little late at about 6pm for a quick departure to brick lane to go get a curry innit.

I can’t speak for everyone else but mine was amazing – Brick lane is so cheap and cheerful, you can a feast for a tiny Oxfam price (we negotiated a discount too of course!)

Off to the ten bells for a couple of drinks and then the brave went onto Cargo, and the tired and small of pocket change (led by me of course) went for a couple more drinks before trying to flag a taxi down for 45 mins ( I can’t do London). If anyone else cares to tell us more about what happened at Cargo then please do divulge…I heard that it was good : )

On Sunday there were a few hangovers, but nothing serious to get in the way of 2 HOURS OF TEAM ROLEPLAY yeah! In this we were planning how the Regional managers are going to work with their teams to put on launch events in their teams. We covered planning, budgeting and roles and responsibilities. And that was pretty much it before we dished out the Oxjam goodies and took this beautiful team photo. Ahhh memories.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2867575829/” title=”the team! by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3218/2867575829_39dfc27bc9_b.jpg” width=”1024″ height=”768″ alt=”the team!” /></a>

Oxjam Regional Managers training in Manchester

August 20, 2008 by

Ahh…happy beginnings to the Oxjam project this year. We finally met the first of our super duper uber Oxjam Regional Managers last weekend. We invited them to Manchester for a two day training session at the YHA.

They all managed to suprise us with:

1) Their amazing enthusiasm and excitement for Oxjam

2) Their great ideas and the level of skills and experience within the group

3) Their dance moves….like duracell bunnies they just kept on going! Definately the best bunch  of dancers we’ve had involved in Oxjam to date!

Everyone arrived on Friday betweeen 4 and 8pm. We then went of to eat at tepenyaki – a Japanese restraunt where our food was cooked up and flambe’d on our table! We learnt during dinner that David was actually a Kung fu master (as pictured below)

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2781009608/” title=”Davey San! by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3044/2781009608_a77a933465_b.jpg” width=”683″ height=”1024″ alt=”Davey San!” /></a>

The team were craving some real ale (I love this group!), so we went to a pub for a few quiet ones.

Saturday – To kick the day off we had an Oxjam pub quiz to share some basic facts about what Oxfam does. After that Benny (oxjam project manager) talked to us about the history of Oxjam and the plans for this year.

We were really lucky to have Chris (a campaigner from the Manchester office) come in and talk to us about his experience with Oxfam in Yemen – where gender inequality is a massive issue that Oxfam is combatting.

After that Claire from our team ran a workshop on how to recruit Oxjam volunteers.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2781010368/” title=”group brainstorming by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3033/2781010368_c531163e13_b.jpg” width=”1024″ height=”683″ alt=”group brainstorming” /></a>

In the evening we went to an amazing Indian restaraunt, followed by a couple of bars and then clubbing. (Someone please upload some of the photos from this!)

Most of us got to bed at a reasonable hour (no names named ; ) and then got up for an early start on Sunday. We covered how to plan a launch event and then had some time for Q and A and reflection on what we’d learnt over the weekend.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27485296@N08/2780153349/” title=”talking by m_ed_ic, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3242/2780153349_66761cfeee_b.jpg” width=”1024″ height=”683″ alt=”talking” /></a>

We left at 1.30 with a tear in our eyes as we waved goodbye to our lovely Oxjammers.It’s certainly been worth all the hard work recruiting them and we can’t wait to see them again

Get cape, wear cape, dry

June 12, 2008 by


It’s festival season people! And we all know what that means…it’s going to rain.

Oxjam favourites Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly will be appearing at a number of festivals this summer including…

Glastonbury (Pyramid Stage – Friday)
Reading and Leeds
T in the Park
Electric Picnic
So if you’re heading to any of the above then why not head to the official webstore and pick up your one-size-fits-all, multi-festival Get Cape waterproof mac!

All proceeds from the selling of the mac will go to Oxfam for the Burma cyclone appeal.

CLICK HERE TO ORDER YOURS TODAY!: http://getcapewearcapefly.trinitystreetdirect.com/store/page4.asp?suptype=&t=1&sub_type=2&prod_id=80&col=30

Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly Burma Fundraiser gig

June 6, 2008 by




I signed myself up to go down and help campaign at the gig organised by Sam from GCWCF (Get cape, wear cape, fly) at the Scala in London. It was an amazing gesture from Sam, who has always been one of our most supportive celebrities. Apparently the venue had given him a good rate in the light of it being a fundraising gig.


We turned up at about 7 to set up the “Burma booth” stacked full of campaigning materials. We were also lucky enough to get in on the soundcheck to stick a few posters up.


Sahra and Raakhi ventured backstage where they encountered the boys from Enter Shakari sitting in an ice bucket (I didn’t ask any more questions)


Tom from the Editors was second to take the stage with his piano accompanist. I always forget how many great tunes the Editors have made, but their anthemic catchy hooks always come back to you when you hear them played. He also kindly posed for us in the Burma booth afterwards.

 Tom from the Editors in the Burma booth

All the acts were great but for me the definite highlight was Enter Shakari. I was blown away by their energy. They had flown over from Spain that morning specially to play the gig, and it seems they had brought a posse of their most hardcore fans with them. About 20 neon-clad teenagers were going mental, doing all kinds of crazy moshpit manoeuvres I hadn’t seen the likes of since I stopped going to Pantera gigs.

Enter Shikari

GCWCF did a stunning final set, and managed to convince the venue manager to let them stay an extra 10 mins over closing time.


A massive THANK YOU to Sam and to all the artists who took part.

The Big Brill Blues Bash – From Pete Davis

June 6, 2008 by


In Brill it’s not difficult to raise enthusiasm for a music gig, but for Oxjam we wanted something and someone special – different from the usual crowd of respected but familiar musical faces.


So we went back in time to Brill’s best band of the 1990s – the Big Bucks Blues Band – who finally parted company in 1999 and went their separate ways. I traced the surviving members (one of them, Cath, a very good friend – died 3 years ago) and all of them were up for a reunion for Oxjam. Even better, Cath’s son Luke – also a musician – was able to leave the London smoke and join the band for the night.


We hired the village Sports and Social Club for free and they made sure they had plenty of barrels of Brill’s micro-brewery, Vale, on pump.  Alan, one of the old band members and still in the village, organised the PA system and got the musicians together for a couple of rehearsals.   I organised the publicity, posters, stickers, etc. The main poster billing was placed on the home page of the Brill village website, in shop windows, and on every wooden telegraph pole in the village.  Word of mouth about an impending Big Bucks reunion stirred up a mini hurricane of interest and excitement.


Oxjam team gave me as much support and stuff as we needed, and we decked out the hall with Oxjam banners and the excellent posters from Oxfam Education Team’s MDGs pack.


So, we agree a date that was good for all, Friday 23 May, and then had the brainwave of inviting Pete the Poet as MC for the evening. Pete lived in the village for 3 or 4 memorable years at the end of the 90s.  He was a headmaster in his day job, and a highly charged performance poet much of the rest of the time.  He wrote some very funny poems about life in Brill – but now lives in North Devon. No problem, he was up for it, and brought his whole family with him.


Even the weather stayed good – so we opened the doors onto the club deck and playing fields, erected gazebos, spread out tables and chairs on the grass – which freed up dancing space inside – and we were deffo going to need that!


First session was unplugged, each individual band member playing a couple of songs, with Pete delivering his amazing, witty, word conjuring verse in between songs. Clive’s blues shouted, harmonica driven Amazing Grace was the stand out for me first half.


And the people came – in numbers; the club was heaving; crowds of old friends who remembered BBBB well, and crowds who’d never heard them, but heard of them, and wanted to hear what the fuss was all about.


BBBB are/were Dave on guitar/vocals, Julian – guitar/vocals, Alan – bass guitar/vocals, Clive – harmonica, Cath used to play keyboards so Richard played these for the night, and alto sax (he used to play often with the band anyway), and Luke joined in on guitar for several songs. Charlie joined in on drums – the old BBBB used a drum machine which wheezed its last before the gig started!


All of them are excellent and original musicians and singers. The second half had BBBB in full cry, belting out their great sound, swopping the lead  between them; while nigh on 200 people bopped in whatever space they could squeeze themselves into.

‘Rock Island Line’ was blasted out at 300 mph, ‘This is Hip’ was mesmerising, ‘Land of the Navajo’ is always amazing when Alan’s voice and Clive’s blues harp play off each other, ‘Let the Good Times Roll …’ and so we all did.


A great evening, fantastic atmosphere,  £350 clear to Oxjam, people drank the bar dry of good ales, several people rated it “…the best gig I’ve ever been to in Brill”.

And that – believe me – is saying something!


BBBB enjoyed the reunion so much they’d like to return next year – and play another Oxjam. 

We’re up for that!