Saturday, July 20, 2024

School’s food festival connects community

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Howick College’s Cultural and Community Council Leaders, from left, Sehandu Maharage, Hope Milo, Zhara Croft and Kara Henderson.

Howick College’s theatre one again transformed into a hub of diverse flavours and cultural experiences as students and staff embarked on a delicious and educational food journey.

The college’s annual International Food Festival is one of the school’s major charity fundraisers.

Organised by the cultural and community councils, this year’s event on June 16 surpassed all previous records.

With 30 stalls selling food from every corner of the globe, $2630 was raised for various charities including Ronald McDonald House, St John’s Ambulance, The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand, the SPCA, Blind Low Vision NZ and The Child Cancer Foundation.

Visitors were greeted by an excited and bustling food market where vendors wore traditional dress and stalls were decorated to showcase the unique cultural heritage of each nation on display.

Whether it was fragrant curries from India, savoury sushi rolls from Japan, hearty pizzas from Italy or flavourful nachos from Mexico, ticket holders were spoilt for choice as they indulged in the many mouthwatering dishes on offer.

Community Council leaders Sehandu Maharage and Kara Henderson observed that food has power.

“The festival fosters a sense of community and unity. People from different backgrounds came together, sharing stories, laughter and delicious food. Food bridges gaps, creates connections, and celebrates the richness of human diversity,” they said.

Cultural Council leaders Hope Milo and Zhara Croft share this sentiment.

“The festival helps students feel like their identities are embraced and celebrated by their teachers and peers. It makes our school a place where they feel welcome, where they have a sense of belonging and can be proud of their heritage,” they said.

The involvement of parents, whānau, and local businesses was also an immense help in making the event such a success.

“From offering their homes as a place for students to cook, to helping adorn stalls with cultural decorations, to the generous donations of ingredients and money, we are reminded that together we are stronger,” Milo says.

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