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NewsGirls & Women

Jo Cox to Be Honoured With Thousands of Summer Street Parties

Last year, the world lost a devoted mother, a loving wife, and an extraordinary activist. Jo Cox was killed by far-right terrorism, at the hands of a white nationalist who shouted “Britain first!” as he shot and stabbed her.

Now, there are plans to celebrate her incredible legacy on the one year anniversary of her death. “The Great Get Together” will honour the late MP with thousands of street parties due to be held all over the UK on 17-18 June.

"We wanted something that celebrated Jo's energy but also brought the community together,” said widower Brendan Cox to BBC Radio 2. "That could be picnics on your village green, street parties, shared barbecues, community bake-offs. The basic idea is to get together and have fun."

Read More: Jo Cox, Champion of Unity, Wins Posthumous Peace Prize

“Jo loved a party and she would have been thrilled by the idea of the Great Get Together,” Cox continued, in comments made to The Guardian. “As she said in her maiden speech in Parliament – we have far more in common than that which divides us.”

Launched by The Jo Cox Foundation and The Big Lunch, the initiative has received widespread support from celebrities including Jamie Oliver and Chris Evans.

It's set to become the biggest British party since the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Theresa May backed the celebrations during Prime Minister's Questions, as British politicians Sadiq Khan, Boris Johnson, and ex-Prime Minister David Cameron joined the Royal Family in public displays of support.

Meanwhile, a scholarship has been launched by the Jo Cox Foundation and Save The Children that aims to support women with a passion for activism. Successful applicants will gain access to the year-long Campaign Bootcamp programme, focussing on several of Cox’s key interests: humanitarian aid, poverty, and global conflicts.

Read More: Husband of Murdered MP Jo Cox Explains Why, Despite Everything, We Must Remain Optimistic

Thomas Mair was sentenced to life in prison for the murder, described by the judge as inspired by white supremacism. Brendan Cox, in an article penned in The Telegraph, wrote that the family are trying to channel their pain into “something more positive” by hosting the national event. Jo’s sister, Kim, described the grieving process as an “extremely difficult period of time” in an interview on BBC Breakfast, but that she wanted “to do something that (Jo) would be proud of”.

Jo Cox was the very best of us. It’s more important than ever that we continue to honour what she stood for: equality, justice, and a fairer world for everyone, everywhere. “The Great Get Together” will be built on those values, but at its most simple, it will be a celebration of compassion as patriotism - the true meaning of what it means to be British. Anybody can pledge to host or support a local event at greatgettogether.org. Get involved.