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Recreation helps resettlement

Media release

9 July 2014

Recreation helps resettlement

More than forty young people with a Refugee background are experiencing new sports in Lower Hutt, Wellington and Porirua this week.

The Fusion 2014 programme is part of a collaborative Ignite Sport and NZ Red Cross Refugee Services pilot to help young people resettle in their new country. Participants are from a variety of backgrounds, including Burma, Colombia and Congo.

The programme is organised and delivered by the Lower Hutt youth development organisation Ignite Sport. Fusion 2014 began in Porirua on Monday with two days of sports new to 16 participants – speedball, floorball, boxing and sparring and a climbing wall challenge. In between recreation sessions workshops encourage the young people to recognise their own gifts and talents and have balance in life.

A Lower Hutt programme is being held 10-11 July with more than 20 young people aged 14-18 years booked to try out the sports. They’ll be participating in similar sessions, with Hutt City Council having input to show the young people what’s available through their recreation programmes.

Ignite Sport coordinator Kevin Goldsbury says the programmes involve socialising, recreation and an introduction to community services.

“We use sport and recreation to encourage and motivate, build leadership, team-building and communication skills. We aim to strengthen the young people’s connection with their new community,” says Kevin.

This is the second year the Fusion programme has run in Lower Hutt, with support from Working Together More Fund and Hutt City Council. A positive evaluation of the 2014 programme could see it rolled out to other resettlement areas in New Zealand next year.

Ends

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