A responsible and socially-conscious company

Othello, variation for three actors, Nathalie Garraud, 2014 © Christophe Raynaud de Lage

New practices and sustainables actions

As a member of the Collectif des Festivals Eco-responsables et Solidaires en région sud (COFEES) and a signatory to the Charte Éco-festival along with the city of Avignon, the Grand Avignon, and Avignon Festival et Compagnies, for the past ten years the Festival d’Avignon has been engaged in a deep reflection about its environmental impact. In 2020, it created an interdisciplinary committee tasked with drawing up a long-term plan of action. This new structure reflects a change of scale in the Festival’s attempt to reduce its waste and greenhouse gases emissions, to encourage social inclusion, and to influence consumption habits. A project which aims at making the question of environmental sustainability one of the main axes of its management and governance models. The goal? In an age of climate crisis, to develop new skills, find and invest in new resources, and multiply large-scale actions in order to help bring about and support new collective practices.

A few figures and actions…

On the Festival’s side:

  • We have appointed sustainable development officers in each of our services who meet every two months to discuss and implement actions in keeping with the social responsibility of the Festival (assessments, plans, environmental indicators, etc.)

  • We exclusively use eco-labelled paper and Imprim’vert-labelled or ISA 14001-certified printers

  • We systematically keep track of how much of our waste we recycle

  • We choose our suppliers based largely on their geographic proximity

  • We’ve reorganised our whole communication system to reduce waste (updating our file, favouring digital over physical communication, gradual restocking of communication documents, etc.)

  • We printed 34,000 fewer documents than last year, saving about 2 tons of paper

  • 150 recycling trays were made available in the Festival’s various venue

  • Sorting bins (inks, batteries, electrical appliaces) are available in our working spaces

  • We collected 18 cubic metres of glass from the Festival’s bar and reception venues

  • We recycled a total of 184 kilograms of plastic cups

  • We reduced our energy consumption by 50% thanks to the new air conditioning units in the Lycée Aubanel and to the new 32 LED light units

  • We buy most of the merchandising available in our store or online from local companies.

On the audience’s side:

  • 41% of festivalgoers know about the environmentally responsible policies of the Festival d’Avignon

  • 5,000 festivalgoers used the shuttles made available by the Festival

  • 39% of festivalgoers use soft modes of transport (walking or cycling)

  • 28% of festivalgoers use public transportation (and 40% of them did so out of concern for the environment)

Accessibility - Employability

Accessibility is a major social issue. By taking into account not only the accessibility of its venues, but also access to information, to creation, and to work, the Festival d’Avignon has chosen to implement essential actions to help people suffering from disabilities, but also people suffering from social exclusion.

Access to our venues, to shows, and to information

  • The Festival continues to make both its venues and its shows more accessible thanks to personalised help and a dedicated email address for questions pertaining to accessibility: accessibilite@festival-avignon.com

  • To better welcome everyone, all of our ticket office and reception personnel have received training by the Audiens culture-handicaps mission, and we have implemented recommendations about welcoming and accompanying people to their seats in our venues

  • The website of the Festival d’Avignon is equipped with a digital accessibility tool called FACIL’iti, which adapts to the visual, motor, cognitive, and/or temporary needs of the user (visual impairment, Parkinson’s, dyslexia, etc.). For instance, after creating your profile on https://www.facil-iti.fr/ and listing your personal needs, you can access vocal summaries or Braille transcriptions of our web pages, enlarge characters, modify colours and contrasts, or browse our website without using a mouse, using only a keyboard or a touch screen.

Persons with reduced mobility

  • Seats are reserved for people with reduced mobility and wheelchair users for each performance.

  • You can use the following phone number or email address to book your tickets:
    +33 (0)4 90 14 14 14 or accessibilite@festival-avignon.com

  • Access maps (by foot or wheelchair) with car parks and travel time depending on mode of transport are available on the Festival’s website for the Cour d’honneur and the Pénitents blancs, and are updated every year

    Venues of the Festival

  • Access platforms are available at all our venues (except for the Théâtre Benoît-XII and the gymnase du lycée Saint-Joseph).

Deaf and hard-of-hearing people

  • The Théâtre Benoît-XII is equipped with a teleloop

  • We are in the process of acquiring individual teleloops to be used in the Festival’s various venues depending on demand

  • Our press conference and video about the programme are available with a translation in French Sign Language.

Blind and visually-impaired people

  • Large print and Braille programmes available for some shows

  • A list of easily accessible shows is made available every year

  • Shows in audio description

  • Creation of a tactile model of La FabricA

  • Mediation actions, set visits, workshops, etc.

Socially marginalised people

  • Mediation actions, set visits, workshops, etc.

  • Adjusted ticket prices in partnership with associations working in the social sphere

  • Priority registration for certain projects (amateur actors for the dramatic series in the garden of the bibliothèque Ceccano, young culture reporters, etc.)

  • Employability (see below)

  • Drama workshop with the inmates of the Centre pénitentiaire d’Avignon-Le Pontet

Employability

The Festival d’Avignon turns into a big company every July, going from 33 permanent employees throughout the year to almost 800 in July, including many reception personnel and custodians. In accordance with its principles of social responsibility and entrepreneurial ethics, the Festival prioritises the hiring of young adults from neighbourhoods targeted by urban policy programmes, selected by social associations located in the Monclar, Champfleury, and la Rocade neighbourhoods in Avignon. We are currently working on bringing in other associations in order to hire people with disabilities.

The goals of this action are as follows:

  • to encourage the professional integration of youths from neighbourhoods targeted by urban policy programmes and of people with disabilities,

  • to increase social diversity among the staff of the Festival,

  • to build trust with the associations working with the Festival.

Institutions taking part in this process are permanent partners of the Festival d’Avignon. The hiring of a young adult can be at once part of a year-long process of artistic and cultural education, help their economic stability, and/or provide them with an opportunity to integrate the world of work.