Four teenagers in their final year at Pakuranga College have come up with a truly inspired idea to encourage diversity and inclusiveness in Aotearoa – starting at school.
As part of the long-running Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme that brings alive new, innovative business ideas from our youth, the group has created HIP Cards – Hello In A Pack of Cards, based on a normal pack of playing cards where each card has a unique greeting from around the world (and those ethnicities represented at the school as well). There are 40 different greetings all up including Māori, Hindi, Tongan, and Mandarin.
Eric Irani, Lucas Greenwood, Joshua Hall and Aman Kumar say that growing up in New Zealand with immigrant backgrounds, they realised that culture and diversity is a big part of their lives and that although New Zealand is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world, the inclusion of diversity in society has been lacking.
Eric told us that when the group first gathered, they noticed that they were all from different backgrounds and had different cultural identities, yet none of them could greet another in their own native language.
The students aim to show that it is okay to be different and to be from different backgrounds. The group aims to get the cards into the New Zealand school curriculum.