Libraries Win Diversity Award

24 August 2009

Wellington City Libraries last night (24 August) received an award from the Human Rights Commission for our work to reach a wide cross-section of the city's population. We are one of the 12 recipients of the annual Diversity Awards for 2009.

 The award recognises our libraries' contribution to the New Zealand Diversity Action Programme through diversity projects and programmes in city libraries.

The award was presented by the Governor General, Hon Sir Anand Satyanand, at the Annual Diversity Awards ceremony at Te Papa - as part of the New Zealand Diversity Forum.

The Wellington City Libraries network includes the Central Library, 11 branch libraries across the city, a comprehensive website and specialist collections.

As part of a Migrant Communities Library Guide, we created web pages in 21 community languages. We employ a multicultural specialist to work in the community and library users can request an interpreter.

We host a large number of cultural events throughout the year with displays and activities, and make space available for use by various cultural groups.

One local initiative that has gone nationwide is our Race Relations Day Earth People project, where children make clay figures and talk about their different backgrounds and what they share in common.

At this year's Diversity Forum, we launched a DVD, Our Place, Your Place, about Wellington's Muslim communities and the libraries. We also co-hosted the annual librarians' forum - part of the main forum activities.