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Aotearoa – we all belong

Press Release – English Language Partners New Zealand

Race Relations Day, March 21, is a chance for Aotearoa to come together in unity and solidarity with our ethnic communities at a tragic point in our history.

Race Relations Day, March 21, is a chance for Aotearoa to come together in unity and solidarity with our ethnic communities at a tragic point in our history.

“We believe in a New Zealand where people from all backgrounds can participate in their communities and feel safe,” said Nicola Sutton, Chief Executive, English Language Partners New Zealand.

“We stand with New Zealanders in saying that migrants and former refugees who’ve made Aotearoa their home are welcome,” Ms Sutton said. “We encourage people to talk to each other and show kindness and consideration on Race Relations Day.”

English Language Partners has made posters and facebook posts available for anyone to download and display on Race Relations Day and beyond. The posters feature three messages in many of Aotearoa’s community languages: ‘Aotearoa, we all belong’; ‘You’re welcome’ and ‘Our people, our cultures, our languages.’

“We want people to share our messages of belonging as widely as possible,” said Ms Sutton. “We want to ensure every Kiwi feels they belong.”

In response to the attack on the Masjid Al Noor and Linwood mosques in Christchurch on 15 March, a number of people have immediately offered to volunteer with the organisation.

One volunteer said: “I would like to show my love by helping any refugee or migrant settle into Christchurch by helping them learn English.”

“If you would like to support newer Kiwis with settling in, volunteer to teach English,” said Ms Sutton. “It’s one way to help New Zealanders feel more connected. It’s a great way to learn from each other.”

“Together we are stronger.”

English Language Partners New Zealand is a national community-based organisation with 23 centre teaching English to over 7,000 adult former refugees and migrants. Our 350 staff and 1,700 volunteers work in programmes which teach English so newcomers can settle well and participate in all aspects of life in Aotearoa New Zealand.

To download the posters and facebook posts: https://www.englishlanguage.org.nz/aotearoa-we-all-belong-2/

For more about volunteering as an ESOL home tutor https://www.englishlanguage.org.nz/volunteer/

For more about your local English Language Partners’ centre https://www.englishlanguage.org.nz/our-centres/
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