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Multicultural NZ 2018 Conference & 29th AGM

Pathway to Treaty-based Multicultural Aotearoa New Zealand

We organised our first national conference Huarahi Hou Hui in conjunction with our 29th AGM from 22 to 23 June 2018. The theme of the conference is Pathway to treaty based multicultural communities.

The Treaty of Waitangi is New Zealand’s founding document. How is this Treaty relevant to us as migrants? At the conference, we discussed on how understanding host culture can contribute to a smooth settlement for the recent migrants and newcomers. We also asked the Ministers of Parliament to debate the question – What is the role of Government and communities in migrant settlement.

We launched the evaluation report of Huarahi Hou, a partnership project with Tangata Whenua that connects migrants with their local marae. Loosely translated, Huarahi Hou means ‘new beginnings/new direction.’ This initiative offers opportunities for migrants to experience marae-based living, learn from Tangata Whenua about the history of their marae and understand our place as newcomers within Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Following the launch of Huarahi Hou, a panel of invited Members of Parliament and community leaders debated the vision of a Treaty-based Multicultural Aotearoa New Zealand (see programme for panel members.) All agreed that this is a conversation to be had at all levels of society from community to government – to develop a framework that recognises both the Treaty and the diversity of our cultural fabric.

Diversity and Inclusion in the Public sector

The Public Service diversity and inclusion strategy is an initiative of the NZ State Services Commission. Gabriel Makhlouf (Secretary and Chief Executive for The Treasury) who co-leads this work stream said that as New Zealand’s State services, we need to value, reflect and understand the communities we serve. Mr Maklouf explained that to do this, we are growing our leaders and our talent to produce a more diverse and inclusive workforce and workplaces. Resources are available here.

Speaker’s presentations from the conference and women’s hui:

1. Social Connections by Laure Romanetti, Albany Newcomers Network
2. Baskets of Blessing by Tam Schurmann, Queenstown Multicultural Council
3. Building relations with Maori by Dr Margriet Theron, Rotorua Multicultural Council
4. Youth Aotea Reo by Ross Patel, NZFMC Youth Council and Moe-Moana Fraser, Hui E!
5. Christchurch Multicultural Strategy by Cr Jimmy Chen, Christchurch City Council


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