Packing for a New Life, a Migrant Suitcase Exhibition

Published: 19-Jul-2019

The Waimakariri Migrants and Newcomers Group are launching a suitcase exhibition to promote cultural awareness and understanding of the different multicultural communities living in the Waimakariri District.

The exhibition will tour the Waimakariri Libraries starting at Oxford from Thursday 4 July to Saturday 20 July.

The exhibition then will tour the district and be on display at the following locations:

Kaiapoi Library:

Monday 22 July – Saturday 3 August, with a family night on Thursday 25 July, 6-7pm.

Rangiora Library:

Monday 5 August – Sunday 18 August, with a family night on Friday 9 August, 6-7pm.

“We want to exhibit what migrant people bring with them from their homeland when they leave for a new country. By presenting the content of a migrant's suitcase we want to show the richness of each culture,” says project leader St├ęphane Pannoux.

The exhibit will present the contents of suitcases migrants from different multicultural communities living in the Waimakariri District including Filipino, Hong Kong, Indian, Tongan, Albanian, Dutch, French and Samoan.

“We live in an ever-evolving society as more migrants settle here. We hope that this exhibition will inspire both migrants and locals to try to understand each other.” says Waimakariri District Council Community Development Facilitator Denise Wiggins.

To enhance the presentation there will be a short narrative about each country. Objects in the suitcase will be labelled together with a brief description of its importance and use. There will be something for both old and young audiences to appreciate.

“We also want to feature a 'Super Migrant Suitcase', to involve the audience by asking the question: If you were moving to another country, what would you put into your suitcase?” said Bob Bolanos, former Chairperson of the Migrants and Newcomers Group.

The group was created four years ago as a community development initiative of the Waimakariri District Council's Community Team. With the objective of supporting migrants, refugees and newcomers to feel welcome, settled and integrated into their community.

For more information, please contact:

Denise Wiggins | Community Development Facilitator

Waimakariri District Council Community Team

Phone: 0800 965 468 (0800 WMK GOV)

Mobile: 021 241 8793

denise.wiggins@wmk.govt.nz