For ten weeks next summer, the streets, parks and public areas of Dundee and its surrounding landscape will be invaded by a colony of colourful giant penguins as part of a Wild in Art event by Maggie’s Dundee.
Announced on 6 October 2017 at The Maggie’s Centre in Dundee, ‘Maggie’s Penguin Parade’, a trail of 100 individually designed penguin sculptures is set to bring together businesses, schools, community groups and creative artists in a series of events culminating in a free and accessible public art trail next summer.
But while these Antartic invaders are sure to capture the hearts of young and old alike, they are also a visual reminder of the important work done by Maggie’s in Dundee, based in the Frank Gehry-designed cancer care centre in the grounds of Ninewells Hospital.
Despite significant breakthroughs in cancer treatment and care during the last two decades, almost half of all the people in Scotland will have cancer in their lifetime by 2020.
Today, there are 220,000 people living with or after cancer in Scotland, with over 30,000 new diagnoses each year. Most of these people will need support beyond medical treatment to find their way through the devastating emotional and physical impacts of cancer.
Maggie’s eight Scottish multi-award winning, architect-designed Centres have been providing free practical and emotional support for people undergoing cancer treatment, and their loved ones, for almost 21 years. When people are diagnosed with cancer they face tough questions, exhausting treatment and difficult emotions that can range from anxiety to loneliness and isolation, but Maggie’s is there to offer an evidence based programme of support that has been shown to improve physical and emotional wellbeing.
At Maggie’s Dundee visitors can expect a warm welcome, a supportive community around the kitchen table – the heart of every Maggie’s Centre – and a full programme of support including drop in sessions with cancer support specialists, stress management workshops and benefits advice.
Maggie’s Dundee is a warm and welcoming place, with qualified professionals on hand to offer a programme of support that has been shown to improve physical and emotional wellbeing.
Maggie’s Penguin Parade hopes to be both an important fundraising initiative to support the centre in Dundee and an invitation to visitors and locals to explore the local area as part of a free day out for children and families.
Maggie’s Dundee in partnership with Wild in Art, one of the leading producers of popular public art events in the UK, is today inviting businesses, organisations and individuals to sign up as a penguin sponsor and be a part of this fantastic, historic event.
Maggie’s Chief Executive Laura Lee said:
“Maggie’s is all about community which is why we love the Penguins project. It is wonderful that the event will attract visitors, provide free days out for children and families, help create special moments and memories that will last a lifetime, encourage healthy lifestyles and put local companies’ brands alongside Maggie’s at the centre of the design regeneration in Dundee – and all this while helping Maggie’s Dundee to provide essential support to people with cancer, as well as family and friends.”
Charlie Langhorne, Director of Wild in Art, said:
“We’re delighted to be working with Maggie’s Dundee to bring a fun event to the city that will really make a difference. It promises to inspire civic pride across all generations, showcase the very best that Dundee has to offer and leave a valuable economic and social legacy. However, it can only be made possible with the support of businesses. That’s why if you’re keen to play an important role in a high profile, citywide project that brings communities together and showcases your corporate creativity, you need to become a sponsor!”
Annie Long, Fundraising Manager for Maggie’s said:
“This is an invitation to put your brand, business or important work right at the heart of the battle against cancer side by side with Maggie’s in solidarity. All the sponsors and partners who get involved in Maggie’s Penguin Parade have so much to gain throughout the life of this exciting 12-month project. Sponsoring a Maggie’s Penguin at the cost of £4,000 comes with a whole host of benefits including the rights to use our Maggie’s Penguin branding in your own marketing and communications, your logo prominent on our website, Penguin Trail app, route map and souvenir auction catalogue, and of course your important contribution will also be commemorated on a plaque at the base of your own personal penguin.”
Dundee has long had an association with penguins. Penguins are the emblem of Captain Scott and Ernest Shackleton’s 1901 expedition to the North Pole, with their Dundee built ship, RRS Discovery now an award-winning visitor attraction berthed at Dundee’s waterfont. They are now also for Maggie’s an eye-catching reminder of the vital support work carried out in Dundee.
The tactile Maggie’s penguin sculpture mould was designed by artist and Senior Lecturer at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Janice Aitken after researching penguins at St Andrew’s Aquarium and a penguin specimen at the University of Dundee’s D’Arcy Thomson Museum.
The call-out for artists to get involved by creating a unique design for each of the 100 Maggie’s penguins will be made on Monday 16th October.
For further information on how to get involved with Maggie’s Penguin Parade please visit www.maggiespenguinparade.com.