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Newcomers welcome to call Napier home – NCC

Napier City Council is joining over 30 councils throughout New Zealand rolling out the welcome mat for newcomers, recent migrants, former refugees and international students.

At a special ceremony yesterday, Wednesday, 31 January, Napier Mayor, Kirsten Wise, along with mana whenua and community partners, signed a Welcoming Communities ‘Statement of Commitment’, reaffirming that newcomers, from all cultures, are welcome to call Napier home.

Napier Mayor, Kirsten Wise, says she’s proud of this significant step in Napier’s Welcoming Communities journey.

“Being part of the Welcoming Communities initiative means we are committed to working alongside our newcomers as they settle into their new home and will support them in any challenges or opportunities available to them.”

Held at Napier’s Pukemokimoki Marae the Statement of Commitment is the last step in Napier gaining stage one of the Welcoming Communities Accreditation. There are four stages of accreditation, each with increasing levels of requirement and benefits. Stage one represents a ‘Committed Welcoming Community’.

“Our goal is to reach stage four accreditation so to reach stage one is a fantastic milestone. As a city we truly are committed to making people new to Napier feel welcome. We want to be a really inclusive city, where everyone can live, work and thrive,” says Mayor Wise.

Welcoming Communities is a nationwide programme led by Immigration New Zealand in partnership with the Office of Ethnic Communities and the Human Rights Commission.

The programme emphasises that a strong, resilient community requires everyone to feel valued, listened to, included, and have a sense of belonging.

Alongside the Welcoming Communities Programme, Napier City Council is leading the development of a community-wide Multicultural Strategy. The strategy will provide Council with direction and identify priorities to help continue to cultivate a flourishing multicultural city for Napier.

Napier City Council has a long history of supporting newcomers with Settlement Support Services from 2006-14. Council also led the coordination of the Hawke’s Bay Settlement Forum who founded the successful DiverCity event, which has been running since 2018.


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