Everyone belongs at festival

ALL corners of the globe will be represented with a selection of food, music and dance at the Coffs Harbour Multicultural Harmony Festival at the Botanic Garden on Sunday.

The Coffs Harbour Council’s Multicultural Reference Group hopes the third annual festival will attract a crowd of up to 5000 people.

A full bill of entertainment is planned from Jamaican and Japanese drumming, to Maori choir, Indian Punjabi dancing and Latino salsa.

Coffs Harbour Council’s special projects co-ordinator Susan Clarke said the event highlights the diversity of the 50 national groups calling the Coffs Coast home.

“The festival was created to promote cultural harmony, respect and tolerance of culture through celebration and education and has grown over the past three years we have held it,” Ms Clarke said.

Due to the large turn-up last year, festival goers are urged to park in the Coffs CBD and use the alternative Coffs Creek access to the gardens via Fitzroy Oval.

Harmony Day as a celebration of multiculturalism and identity enters its 11th year in NSW, with 1800 events planned across the State on Sunday.

The Coffs Harbour Multicultural and Harmony Festival runs from 9am to 3pm.

Members of the community are also invited to Southern Cross University campuses to take part in Harmony Day activities and to help celebrate the University’s multicultural community and the contribution it makes to cross-cultural understanding in local areas.

At the Coffs Harbour campus, there will be a Burmese photographic display and international food on Monday, March 22, from 11am to 1pm.

Equity and Diversity manager Rachel Callahan said Harmony Day was aimed at getting people from all cultures involved and encouraging respect and a sense of belonging for everyone.

“Each year, the key message of Harmony Day is ‘everyone belongs’,” said Ms Callahan.

“It’s about community participation, inclusiveness, respect and a sense of belonging.

“Australia is a land of many cultures, and Harmony Day is about celebrating and encouraging respect for this diversity and the cohesive and inclusive nature of our nation.”


For information on various Harmony Day events in our area, go to the special website at www.scu.edu.au/equity

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