StarJam - you rock!

The Joy of Music

"StarJam empowers young people with disabilities through music and performance workshops, so they learn new skills, gain confidence, have fun and grow, educating the wider community of what is possible." - StarJam

Of the 75 children who the organisation works with in Christchurch, 27 took part in the concert - The Joy of Music - held in collaboration with Mark Walton and students from Sydney Conservatorium of Music. 

Profile: Restorative Justice Services Otautahi Christchurch - - provide opportunities for reconciliation for victims of crime, offenders and the community

"Our restorative services are available for victims of crime, offenders, whanau, and members of the community. We consider arranging a restorative justice conference at any stage in the criminal justice process providing people taking part in it choose to be there, are fully informed about the outcomes, and have realistic expectations." - Jennifer Cato

Profile: Prisoners Aid (PARS) - reducing reoffending through community support

"I feel like PARS is standing at a bottom of a cliff and a deportee is getting thrown over. We catch him/her, but then another deportee is thrown over. We quickly pass on the deportee to someone else and we make the catch. This keeps on happening and before you know it, there are a whole bunch of agencies that are getting really good at passing on deportees just like we are getting good at catching them but no one ever asks who is throwing the deportees over the cliff in the first place.
And what about all the children and grandchildren still standing at the top of cliff." - Helen Murphy

Discussion: Eighth Annual Regional Refugee Forum

The Regional Refugee Forum was held on March 20, themed “Improving Refugee Health through Literacy, Advocacy & Outreach”. This is an annual event organised by the Canterbury Refugee Resettlement and Resource Centre (CRRRC), as a platform for NGO representatives, communities, service providers, and stakeholders in the refugee sector to share their experiences and vision to promote refugee issues in the Canterbury region.

Profile: Disabled Persons' Assembly New Zealand

"The two biggest hurdles we face in Christchurch, especially during the rebuild, is to ensure that all new buildings are disabled-friendly, and employers are willing to give jobs to people with disability. We, as a country, have come a long way in the last 30-40 years but still a lot of work needs to be done," he says. "Over 20-25 percent of our population suffers from some kind of disability. So it's important that disabled issues are at the forefront of decision-making.”

Gender: IWD 2017 campaign theme - #BeBoldForChange

Wellington needs its women refuge up and alive: Shakti

The Christchurch chapter of Shakti organised a panel discussion on the theme – No Equality Without Diversity, marking the City's International Women's Day on March 8. In attendance were volunteers of Shakti, Anne Galloway, Christchurch City Councillor, Surinder Tandon, President of Christchurch Multicultural Council, Archna Tandon, Chairperson, Shakti, Christchurch, and representatives from Canterbury Police Detective Sergeant Nicola Reeves and Constable Emily Noonan. 

Canterbury Business Association launches a free migrant employment and legal advisory service

Canterbury Business Association (CBA) – a non-profit organization facilitating national and international connections for business whilst empowering migrants, refugees, youth and women – has launched a new service in response to the need to help migrant students and workers with legal representation and advice. “Christchurch lawyers Saunders & Co, assisted by University of Canterbury School of Law student interns will be helping CBA members with legal questions. It's a free but by appointment service,” informed Taz Mukoromeindo, founder of CBA.

Volunteering: Over 400 Scout groups across NZ

Scouts is New Zealand's biggest mixed youth organisation, which offers 6- to 26-year-olds fun and challenging activities, unique experiences, everyday adventure and the chance to help communities. The organisation says, "Scouts develop skills including teamwork, time management, leadership, initiative, planning, communication, self-motivation, cultural awareness and commitment. Scouts take part in activities as diverse as kayaking, abseiling, expeditions overseas, photography, climbing and caving.

Donate: Saving lives, made easy

The app will now remember your login so you don’t have to login every time. You can also search for a donation location via map view using geo-location, list view, or by using the search bar. You can also see locations which have open appointments, as well as locations that are planned but not yet open to appointment bookings.

World peace: Canterbury Interfaith Society prays for world peace

Organised by the Canterbury Interfaith Society (CIS), the annual prayers for world peace were held at the Peace Bell, Christchurch Botanic Gardens, recently, with around 100 people attending including the Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy. Notably, working with several groups, NZ Human Rights Commission had released a Statement on Religious Diversity in 2007, which encompasses international human rights treaties and NZ Bill of Rights Act. This was what led to the formation of CIS.

Protest: "March for Democracy" in Christchurch

Hundreds of protesters from a range of civil society organisations including NZ Council of Trade Unions (CTU), Public Services Association (PSA), FIRST Union, Greenpeace,, Oxfam New Zealand, SAFE for Animals and It’s Our Future, came out on the Riccarton Road in Christchurch on September 10, for what they called “a Day of Action that will affirm our democratic rights and support initiatives to build a fairer and more sustainable society”.

Volunteering: We want more youth and men to volunteer - VolCan

Lend us a hand, mate, says Richard Brewster, strategy and finance manager, VolCan

Volunteering Canterbury (VolCan), which has grown manifolds since its inception in 1988, recruited 566 individual volunteers and 548 group volunteers, ran 35 events and networked with almost 80 not-for-profits (NPOs) last year. This information was shared by the office bearers at the VolCan's Annual General Meeting held last month.