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Maori leader keynote speaker at It’s Time to Talk

10 September 2006

Maori leader keynote speaker at It’s Time to Talk

Prominent Maori leader Sir Tipene O’Regan will be the guest speaker at the second It’s Time to Talk event in Christchurch on 19 September.

Launched in Christchurch in March when Herman McKinney from Seattle (Christchurch’s Sister City) came to the city to promote the successful community forum, It’s Time to Talk creates opportunities for diverse communities to interact. In Seattle, It’s Time to Talk was designed to make the city the most successful place to live, conduct business and enjoy a high quality of life for all its citizens.

Christchurch Mayor Garry Moore said It’s Time to Talk provided a forum for residents to meet and relate on a personal level with people from different communities in our city.

After Sir Tipene’s presentation, participants will engage in round-table discussions on race relations. Each group will then be challenged to follow up this initial dialogue with another event, such as a shared meal in their home.

While some Christchurch families had been sharing a meal in their homes with other families and individuals of a different ethnic background following the launch of It’s Time to Talk, Mr Moore said he hoped the second forum would foster a greater level of this interaction.

“This is an excellent opportunity for Christchurch to lead the way for the rest of New Zealand in supporting the diverse groups within our community.”

It’s Time to Talk will be held in the Limes Room, Christchurch Town Hall, from 7pm to 9pm on Tuesday, 19 September.

Mr Moore said he invited everyone to attend and to bring a friend. “Christchurch has a rich, diverse community and by getting to know our neighbours we can create a prosperous community that supports and celebrates diversity.”


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