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Migrants Ditch White Xmas for "Surreal" Kiwi One

Migrants Ditch White Xmas for "Surreal" Kiwi One

Ian, Sandra & Sarah Settle Down Under

Auckland 22 December 2005: Three Britons will be ditching their traditional white Christmas for warmer festive conditions thanks to a job expo they attended in London two months ago.

Opportunities New Zealand Expo, an event held in the UK twice a year, gives New Zealand employers the chance to court skilled British and expatriate workers. This year they had over 10,000 visitors.

Hayley Roberts, a director of Opportunities New Zealand Expo, says amongst the many success stories are three migrants who are working within the three Auckland Regional District Health Boards; Waitemata DHB, Auckland DHB and Counties Manukau DHB.

"This is a very fast turnaround, to attend the Expo in mid to late October, then migrate within two months - it just shows you how keen people are to move here," says Roberts.

Ian Clark, an anaesthetic technician who was previously in Yorkshire had never been to New Zealand, but has moved for a change of lifestyle.

"I'd never been before, but thought I'd take the plunge. I was sitting in a café in Takapuna recently on a beautiful sunny day and across the road the Salvation Army Band was playing "Oh Come Oh Ye Faithful", it was surreal. Strange. Very, strange," says Clark.

Sandra Jevons, a midwife from Devon, had also never been to New Zealand, but was also motivated for lifestyle reasons.

"The UK has become far too expensive to bring up a family. We are buying our own home and the children are settled into local schools.

"We would recommend anyone interested to visit the Expo to find out all aspects of moving to New Zealand. This is a very welcoming and beautiful country," says Jevons.

Sarah Baylis, a radiographer originally from New Zealand, who had been living in London has moved back to be closer to immediate family. Sarah, who is pregnant, is looking forward to raising her family "now we can afford to."

"We had only been back once since I moved to England, and my husband fell in love with the country and the lifestyle," says Baylis.

Roberts says research from previous Expos showed people want to migrate for a better lifestyle.

"This fact, combined with skill shortages in New Zealand in key areas such as healthcare, accountancy and engineering has prompted us to schedule another Expo in London in March next year to meet demand," says Roberts.

Opportunities New Zealand Expo has increased five fold in the last five years with 120 exhibitors showing in the UK this year.


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