Kia Ora, Hello, Hola, Mabuhay, Namaste
I take this opportunity to introduce myself.
I am Adriana Rincon from Colombia and joined the Southland Multicultural Council as a Committee Member June this year.
I have been attending and following the work being done for the Council since last year in June when my family and I attended the first potluck dinner at Hansen Hall and it has been a year full of enriching learning from different cultures and backgrounds that make me feel a privilege and lucky person in this community and organisation.
I would like to start saying a big thank you to all our financial members, sponsors, volunteers and supporters who bring and give the best of them to build a quality, diverse and strong Southland Multicultural Council for our community in general, including locals, migrants, and newcomers in the Southland region.
We welcome spring season, an amazing time of the year when nature share with us a transition from winter where everything blooms again and fills the city with colours and the sun rejoices us with its presence. We hope all of you are enjoying this new season with friends and family.
During the last past months, during our winter season, we celebrated two different cultures through our Potlucks dinners.
In June, we enjoyed the Pinoy Fiesta a Filipino night a celebration of Filipino culture and the commemoration of Philippine independence. Attendees had the opportunity to enjoy performances from the Filipino dance group, as well as different activities including a representation and contest of traditional costumes and a delightful Filipino cuisine.
In July, the Colombian community brought a night full of colours, rhythm, and flavours in the celebration of Colombian Independence day, an event in collaboration with Red Cross New Zealand. The night was a complete success and the feedback received from attendees was positive. The night was fulfilled with different music, performances, activities including raffles and a delicious gastronomic sample of the country.
In July, we also joined and participated at the ILT Kid Zone around the World, 6 days full of activities where people of all ages enjoyed and learned.
This year we had the opportunity to congratulate and celebrate the dedication, commitment and hard work of our amazing volunteers and recognize the importance they represent for the Southland Multicultural Council. In August, we held the Recognition volunteer event and it was a big success where all volunteers attending shared over a dinner their experiences being volunteers and received their certificates of appreciation. Thanks to all our volunteers who are the foundation of our organization and who share their time, knowledge, experience and talents to make the SMC a diverse and unique organization in the community.
We also attended different social and cultural events in the Southland region, supporting and joining the work being done for other groups and organizations within the community.
Sadly, in July we had to say goodbye to two amazing members of the organization. Ashvin Illangeshwaran our Secretary and Youth group leader and Daksha Thakur a Committee member considering personal and career opportunities moved to Hamilton. We know it was not an easy decision to take but we are sure that wherever they go they will continue doing the same community job you did here and we wish them the best in this new stage in their lives.
I would like to take this opportunity to thanks to our President Meggy Bartlett-McBride for the job done so far during this 2018 leading the organization and sharing her knowledge and experience with all committee members and volunteers who want to support and contribute to the organization and follow the values and principles of it. In addition, a big thanks to Tushnica Dissanayake our Administrator and all the administration volunteers team, who dedicate their time at the office to all activities and work.
Looking ahead before the year 2018 ends our teams are in preparation with few events and activities. We invite you all to continue supporting the organization and we hope to see you in all the events and activities that we are organizing.
Enjoy spring and value every minute of life with family and friends. God bless you all.
“Being engaged in some way for the good of the community, whatever that community, is a factor in a meaningful life. We long to belong, and belonging and caring anchors our sense of place in the universe.”