Our second Faith Leaders Forum was an opportunity for faith leaders from throughout New Zealand to connect with one another and establish ongoing communication. We have extended our work with ethnic communities to include particular faith communities, recognising that faith is often intertwined with ethnicity.

A man speaks to a group of people sitting around a table.

About 20 representatives of different faith organisations gathered in Auckland on 23 February.The meeting was an opportunity for the faith leaders to work collectively, to meet Melissa Lee, Minister for Ethnic Communities, and hear from John Price ONZM, Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

We acknowledge the important role that faith leaders play in supporting communities and addressing challenges within our diverse society. The Faith Leaders Forum aims to establish a space where all involved parties work collectively to address issues and concerns. It aims to form a sustainable relationship among leaders, which is based on sensitivity, transparency, trust, and mutual respect.

These forums are an opportunity for faith leaders to establish connections and communication with one another, and for our Ministry to share relevant and reliable Government information with them.

A group of people sit around tables, placed in a hexagon shape. They are listening to one woman speak.

The leaders were interested in continuing conversations outside the forums, as they work collectively for all faith communities in New Zealand.

Part of our work to connect the faith leaders with Government, we organised for NEMA to present at our second Forum.

John Price, Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, spoke about New Zealand’s risk to natural disasters, and the future catastrophic scenarios NEMA is planning for.

The Forum expanded on the inaugural Faith Leaders Forum held in September 2023 and leads on from previous work our Ministry, and former Office, has done to connect faith leaders, such as the Connecting Faith | Interfaith Communities Hui in 2020.


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