Where Shall We Call Home? exhibition
Held at the wonderful Depot Artspace in Devonport, featured 60 artists who came together to show their support – and raise funds – for refugee resettlement in New Zealand.
The artworks were created especially for the exhibition. Each piece was the artist’s personal response to the refugee situation. Themes ranged from hope, despair and longing, to family and safety. There was a universal feeling among the artists that, although geography has protected New Zealand from having to face the refugee crisis head-on, we cannot turn away from those in need.
Contributing artists included painters Jennie de Groot, Nicola Gibbons, Nancy Synnestvedt and Tina Frantzen, photographers Elizabeth March and Maureen Tan and bone carver, Aaron Frater.
The results were simply amazing
64 works sold
Refugee Day Celebration
This special evening event gave refugee speakers a forum to share their stories and locals a chance to listen.
Brenda organised a fundraising concert which featured Donna Dean, Gitbox Rebellion, Albi & the Wolves. A really fun night was had by all and it raised a lot of money.
5 ways you can help refugees in NZ
1. Urge the Government to increase its refugee intake.
The United Nations ranks New Zealand at 90th in the world for hosting refugees per capita. Please sign the petition to double the quota: www.actionstation.org.nz/refugees
2. Educate yourself.
Who are refugees? UNHCR (The UN Refugee Agency) website has some excellent statistics and insights at global level.
For New Zealand specific information, including compelling stories from former refugees who have found a safe haven here in NZ, go to the New Zealand Red Cross website
3. Support community resettlement.
Volunteer to help refugee background families build a new life in New Zealand, while learning about different cultures and meeting new people. Or donate household goods to families who arrive with nothing. See the Red Cross website for all the info you need.
Be welcoming and friendly to refugees you meet in your community. It all helps.
4. Employ someone from a refugee background.
Having a job is a critical to feeling like a constructive member of a community. It helps people to regain their independence, to feel empowered about their new life, and to support family members both in NZ and elsewhere.
The Red Cross Pathways to Employment Programme can help put you in touch with the right candidates.
5. Donate to help reunite families.
Being reunited with family members is the most pressing concern for refugees in New Zealand. There is a very small window in which to help separated family members come to NZ – and it can be very difficult without financial and practical help. ARFT raises funds to help with airfares and expenses. Donate to ARFT here.