A COLLECTIVE VOICE
The Society works diligently to represent the collective voice and interests of all Southeast Asian migrants and their communities in New Zealand. Members of the Society are indivi-duals who currently reside in New Zealand and who have come from, or have affinity with, any of these 10 Southeast Asian countries, namely, Brunei Darrusalam, Cambodia, Indone-sia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Members meet at regular meetings or at official work-related functions or meetings, as well as through informal networks and collaborative projects. The Society endeavours to collaborate with various ethnic communities and contributes by employing its knowledge and expertise in varied cultural experiences; strengthen migrant’s capability and optimise their contributions towards social development; delivering relevant, evidence-based and effective services; and, influence local, regional and national policies ensuring these meet the interests of our stakeholders.
We consult and conduct regular communications with key stakeholders to provide advoca-cy and policy representation; organise teach-ins, seminars and alternative education class-es; network with government and the private sector; promote emergency preparedness; encourage volunteerism; initiate socio-cultural events to showcase cultural understanding; and, do fund-raising activities as well.
A UNIFIED FRONT
The Society believes in the significance of making its presence known, on the urgency of creating a united front for Southeast Asians – that a critical mass is important for our views to be heard, that the formation of a group can ultimately provide a venue for dis-cussion where we can showcase the richness of our own cultures, address existing gaps between established migrants and newcomers, and promote our capacity for effective social integration.
Challenges beset us as individuals and as communities. But in our united efforts, we will be able to fashion a shared, collaborative response, take pride in our cultural differences, yet work together to advance a common heritage and spirit that is Southeast Asian.