Director's update - July 2018

Kia ora

Welcome to the July edition of our monthly newsletter.  At this time of year, the Office of Ethnic Communities also eagerly awaits the upcoming applications for the Ethnic Communities Development Fund. If you would like to know more about the Fund, or even receive some advice before submitting your application, please visit the Office of Ethnic Communities website or email us at community.matters@dia.govt.nz.

As some of you may be aware, there is a lot happening in the education space at the moment, and it’s important that we all get involved. The Ministry of Education has started a conversation about building a better education system, and wants to hear from children, young people, parents, teachers, employers, iwi, families and whanau. If you are quick, you can still complete the Education Conversation survey, which closes today. If you miss this, there is still time to have your say on the Tomorrow’s Schools Review, which is open until the 6 August. Finally, the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) review will continue until 16 September, with public workshops and competitions, so please take the opportunity to “make your mark”. More information on their website.

In addition to the work in education, work has been progressing on the Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction. The inquiry is focusing on improving mental health and addiction support systems for all New Zealanders. During the last month, the Office of Ethnic Communities provided further information to the board of Inquiry on issues faced by ethnic communities in New Zealand, which will support the board of Inquiry’s consultation process. If you’d like to know more about more this, please email us ethnic.communities@dia.govt.nz    

On a brighter note, there are a couple of important events for our diverse communities taking place next month: Eid ul-Adha on 21 August, and the Indian Harvest Festival of Onam on 23 August. I encourage you to wish members of your communities who celebrate these events happy and safe festivities.

Kia kaha,

“Austin”

Cathrine Austin