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Millennuim Festival Of The Children

MEDIACOM-RELEASE-

MILLENNUIM FESTIVAL OF THE CHILDREN GATHERING MOMENTUM

Wellington's connections with the rest of the world are increasing as planning for the week-long Millennium Festival of the Children gathers momentum.

135 Wellington primary and intermediate schools are involved in the Festival Project and are communicating with schools in some 200 countries around the world.

Project Director Sandi Hall says around 80 countries have confirmed that they will be sending two children, aged 9 -12, and a teacher as representatives to the Festival. The visitors are being hosted by local families from the schools with whom they have been communicating.

The festival, which is the only international Millennium event in New Zealand, is expected to involve some 2000 children of whom nearly 400 will be from other countries.

Running from 1- 8 January, the Festival will begin with the Gathering of Children at which the 2000 children will greet the new millennium in a pre-dawn ceremony of music and movement which will be part of a global telecast of Millennium celebrations

Sandi Hall says the Festival reflects the key official Millennium them of "First to the Future" - "since without children, there is no future". It was this realisation that led to her initiating the Festival nearly three years ago. She says the Festival aims to encourage and foster the growth of peace through education.

"The children taking part in this Festival will have a rare opportunity to meet other children from a wide range of countries and cultures. They will have the chance to talk to each other about their lives. This is likely to foster tolerance of diversity and to have a lasting impact on them."

ENDS....

For more Information please contact:Sandi Hall

Festival Office 801 8705 or

801 8679

Photographic Opportunities

A range of great photographic opportunities can be arranged for Wellington media. We will call you to discuss these with you.

RELEASED VIA MEDIACOM

MD1320-319/ALO/EML

29 OCTOBER 1999

NNNN 29/10/99 08-58NZ


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