Towards a multilingual Aotearoa: National MP Nikki Kaye’s second language learning bill

“Speaking more than one language has enormous cognitive, cultural, social and economic benefits. New Zealand is a diverse country where 160 languages are spoken, and it’s important that what’s being taught in schools reflects that. My Bill would require the Minister of Education to set at least ten national priority languages for schools following public consultation and places a requirement on the Crown to resource teaching these languages in primary and intermediate schools.”

Significance of Eid'ul Adha

The sacrificial story leads back to Abraham and Ishmael. Abraham was instructed in a vision to sacrifice his son Ishmael for the sake of God. In consulting with a willing Ishmael, both proceeded to make the sacrifice to obey the command of their Lord. In this selfless act of devotion they gained the Mercy of God who summoned a lamb in place of Ishmael. 

Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple

The Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple has been part of the Christchurch landscape for over 25 years. In its current location for the past 10, the temple provides an amazing space where people from every culture come to share experiences, learn new things, and maximise the joy from there life. The building is designed around the Longmen Grottos in China, a place were there is over 10,000 Buddhist Statues carved throughout an intricate network of caves.

Dunedin celebrates its first-ever World Refugee Day

The event was World Refugee Day held on July 1.  It was an amazing evening, and the hall was jam packed. There was standing room only.  While we were expecting 250, almost 550 people came. Most of the former refugees settled in the city came. There were 12 cultural times followed by a multicultural fashion show. This included performance by a sufi group in the city, Indian, Irish and Chinese dancing, Japanese drumming, and a kapa haka.

Profile: Surinder Tandon, President, Christchurch Multicultural Council

Multicultural Times is a newspaper for the community, by the community, and geared towards the community. That's why we have developed a support matrix around the newspaper, where we are partnering with organisations and individuals, who are the guiding light - the beacon of multiculturalism across New Zealand. These are what we call, Multicultural Times Navigators. And we are glad to announce that Christchurch Multicultural Council (CMC), led by Surinder Tandon, is our first such Navigator.

All your immigration questions answered

Two events, one was a speech while the other was a public interaction, but the message from the Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway was essentially the same. First was the annual conference of the New Zealand Association for Migration and Investment held in Auckland on August 17, and the other was a public meeting organised by Labour MP from New Lynn Deborah Russell on August 21. Here’s what he said on several immigration issues.

Analysis of the rampant growth of Auckland’s hotel industry

2017 was easily the busiest for New Zealand hotel industry, with the occupancy rate touching 70 percent. This rate is used by Statistics New Zealand to understand how difficult it is to book a room in the country. But with the America’s Cup scheduled for 2021, there is a growing concern of hotel rooms shortage hitting Auckland very soon, as pointed in a recent report by the global commercial property research institute CBRC.

Selwyn launches its Welcoming Communities plan for newcomers and migrants

On August 24, the Selwyn District Council, under the leadership of Mayor Sam Broughton, launched the Immigration NZ initiated Welcoming Communities plan. This is significant as the Selwyn district has been experiencing extraordinary population growth for several years. This was accelerated by the Canterbury earthquakes, with people moving from Christchurch, along with people arriving from overseas to live in Selwyn and contribute to the Christchurch rebuild.

New Zealand’s untapped talent pool

In New Zealand, we have a long list of skill shortages that need to be filled to ensure we’re meeting the needs of our growing population.bWe need more farmers (beef and dairy), arborists and market gardeners. We need construction managers, university lecturers, mechanical engineers, midwifes and nurses. We need bakers, builders, bricklayers, carpenters, joiners, mechanics and aged care workers.

Challenge to businesses to employ more refugees

A visiting British economist has laid down a wero for New Zealand employers to overcome their psychological hurdles and employ more refugees. Philippe Legrain, author of the book Immigrants: Why Your Country Needs Them as well as articles for The Guardian and The Wall Street Journal, was the key note speaker at a Breakfast held last week at Parliament hosted by the Hon Grant Robertson in association with HOST International, Multicultural New Zealand, ChangeMakers Refugee Forum  and the Human Rights Commission.

Muslims across NZ celebrate Eid'ul Adha

Volunteers from Jannah Road Charity Op Shop, which is "New Zealand's first Islamic Op Shop committed to supporting local Muslim communities", at Auckland's Eid'ul Adha celebrations on August 22. The charity also runs a hajj sponsership project, says Denit, the founder, who herself immigrated from Turkey.

NZITA launches its South Island chapter

The New Zealand India Trade Alliance (NZITA) has launched a South Island chapter to create a
gateway for companies in the South to connect with the huge opportunities emerging in the Indian market. The event called Unlocking the Potential of India, was held in Christchurch and was attended by over 60 representatives from companies looking to expand business opportunities in the Indian market. The local chapter will be led by Michael Henstock.

Majority Kiwis view NZ-China relationship in a positive light: NZCC survey

Titled Perceptions of China Monitor: Survey 2018, the first-ever survey done by the New Zealand China Council has revealed interesting insights into New Zealanders’ perceptions of China, as a comprehensive partner in trade, science, the arts and more. The online survey of 1,001 New Zealanders aged 18 years and over, conducted between the 2nd and 9th of February 2018, showed that overall, opinions of New Zealand’s relationship with China are positive.

Low pay rates and expensive immigration process, concerns Filipino migrants the most: E tū

A report released on August 26, which was commissioned by E tū, and was funded by the Industrial Relations Fund, has revealed the experiences of mostly Filipino construction workers in Christchurch and Auckland in 2017 and 2018. A small number of employers from around New Zealand was also interviewed. Along with low pay, and poor housing emerging as critical issues, the report, by researcher and lawyer, Catriona MacLennan, also reveals wide-spread exploitation of migrants by immigration companies and so-called pastoral care companies.

Get involved - join the New Zealand Newcomers Network Initiative

Are you looking to connect in your new community? Make friends and find a sense of belonging? Then New Zealand Newcomers Network may be perfect for you! The journey of the New Zealand Newcomers Network Initiative (NZNN) began in 2006, after a series of government funded reports found, that making friends was one of the most difficult issues new migrants to New Zealand faced, when settling into the new community.

AUT’s inaugural diversity awards celebrate staff’s commitment to diversity

Auckland University of Technology (AUT) staff came together for the Inaugural Vice-Chancellor Diversity Awards to acknowledge the diversity initiatives of eight awardees at the Auckland Art Gallery last week. The awards celebrated AUT’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, embedding everyday diversity and saluting work by the University’s staff in the diversity space.

NZ Police leads by example in diversity recruitment

Consider this: Of the 60 new constables that graduated from the Royal New Zealand Police College last week [from Wing 317], 38 percent are females, 19 officers were born overseas and between them speak around a dozen foreign languages. The youngest recruit is 19 and the oldest is 45. One has the distinction of playing in the Ranfurly Shield-winning Hawke’s Bay rugby team, another is a fine musician who has performed with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra.

Vietnam Veterans Day marked in Christchurch

This years Vietnam Veterans Day was held on Saturday, August 18, in the Papanui RSA club with about fifty members and guests attended. The ceremony started with the parade of Vietnam veterans. The Piper played while representatives of various sections of NZ troops laid the wreaths. This was followed by other participants laying poppies. The bugler played “The Last Post”. I gave a speech, presenting the view of a Vietnamese who had lived through Vietnam war.