Wellingtonians value the experiences other cultures bring to the city. Over the last 3 months we’ve funded groups as diverse as Volunteer Wellington, the Asian Events Trust and the African Communities Council.
A theme in the funding in Wellington city has been cultural diversity – from celebrating the arrival of the Chinese Year of the Monkey in February to looking forward to Africa Day on 14 May.
Africa Day 2016 celebrates human rights
Sam Manzana, President of the African Communities Council of Wellington, says, ‘This is our annual flagship event. This year we’re celebrating human rights and particularly the rights of women. Africa Day is a great way for us to come together annually to share our culture and heritage with our fellow kiwis. It wouldn’t be possible without funders such as Wellington Community Trust.’
Mark Cassidy, Chief Executive comments ‘Our city becomes a vibrant place when everyone can experience each other’s culture. However it’s important to remember that for many people new to Wellington, learning to live here isn’t always easy.’
Volunteering brings rewards
As well as cultural celebrations, the Wellington Community Trust is funding Volunteer Wellington to work with migrants and refugees to help them get involved in their communities by volunteering. In 2015 they worked with over 600 people from more than 70 different ethnicities and expect to do the same in 2016.
Charlie Devenish of Volunteer Wellington comments, ‘For many migrants and refugees volunteering is a great way to start making connections in a new city and the organisations they volunteer with benefit too. They bring with them a huge range of skills and experience ranging from accounting and IT to caring for older people. Many have gone on to be recognised through our Volunteer Connect Awards, which reward high levels of community participation and effort. Funding from Wellington Community Trust makes a big difference to what we all can achieve.’
Over the last 3 months, more than 30 groups have received funding amounting to almost $300,000 from the Wellington Community Trust.