Monday 10 August 2015 marked the beginning of the Shenzhen Cultural Week, which was organised by the Wellington City Council and was launched at Te Papa, New Zealand’s National Museum. The night began with a reception to welcome guests to the Cultural Week. Political Counsellor Fang Qiu, Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown, Vice President of the Shenzhen Association for International Cultural Exchanges Liu Jiachen, Chairman of the Asia – New Zealand Foundation John Luxton and other guests including a number of Mandarin Language Assistants based in Wellington attended the ceremony.
In July 2015, an International Friendship Day was held at Victoria University of Wellington. This was organised by the Victoria University International Student Association, and a number of cultural clubs contributing to the event by showcasing their culture through food and performance.
In April 2015, the NZCFS Wellington Branch and AIESEC, the world’s largest student run organisation that sends university students on internships and exchanges around the world, called for applicants who wanted to go on a 6+ week AIESEC exchange to China. Funding to support the exchange for successful applicants was to be provided through the Simon Deng Li Fund.
Tess Pilkington, from the Auckland University of Technology, was selected as one of the winners of the NZCFS-AIESEC China Exchange project. She is currently studying Business Management and Health Science and has previously travelled to China through the Aotea Youth Symphony Orchestra in 2011.
The focus of this meeting was the NZCFS National Conference which was hosted by the Nelson Branch in May. The theme chosen was “有办法 YO BANFA: There is a way!” based on the title of a book from Rewi Alley, and there was a strong focus on the initiatives in progress to pursue the society goals in new ways, especially in relation to youth work. Seven Wellington Branch members attended the conference, and Christine Strickland, Branch Vice-President, and Kirk McDowall, Local Committee Member, gave a PowerPoint presentation of the conference during the monthly meeting.