The weather cleared just in time for children, families and all Upper Hutt Diwali goers to breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy the early evening sun as they made their way into Maidstone School Hall on Saturday 5th November.
It must be one of the most colourful nights in Upper Hutt's calendar, filled with performances and music from across South Asia, games, local food, community awards, and all the magic that happens in between.
Upper Hutt Multicultural Council was proud to host nearly 400 people in the venue generously provided by Maidstone Intermediate School, with special appearances from the Indian High Commission and Orongomai Marae. This is the second year running that this evening has sold out beforehand, demonstrating the growing demand in the community.
In line with the Tiriti-based values of this volunteer organisation, UHMCC opened the evening with both a ceremonial lighting of the lamp. and a kapa haka. UHMCC took the opportunity to acknowledge some of the unsung heroes of the community, who dedicate their own time to growing positive and safe multicultural spaces locally. Community service awards this year went out to
- The Sewing Club volunteers; Phyllis, Cherie and Claire
- Daisuke Hayashi from the Japanese community
- Winsome Lam from Hutt Multicultural Council
- Laura Xiao from the Chinese community
- Sam Manzanza from the Congolese community
- And to Silverstream School
UHMCC hopes that everyone enjoyed the local celebration of lights and kotahitanga, and extends a special thank you to the volunteers that make these gatherings possible.
Wishing everyone a wonderful Diwali with their families and communities.