“We Are One” was the strong message sent by the New Zealand Chinese Community in the Fundraising Night for Cyclone Gabrielle Recovery, which attracted over 2000 spectators in Victory Convention Center on March 24. Chinese Ambassador to New Zealand Dr. Wang Xiaolong, Chinese Consul General in Auckland Mr. Chen Shijie, Minister of Statistics of New Zealand Dr. Deborah Russell, Member of Parliament Ms Naisi Chen，Auckland Mayor Mr. Wayne Brown, attended the event.
In his remarks, Ambassador Wang Xiaolong expressed his appreciation to the Chinese community for their contribution to the cyclone recovery. “As an integral part of the wider multicultural community in New Zealand, the Chinese community has joined in those efforts, in line with the Chinese people’s fine tradition of extending a helping hand to friends and neighbours in need”, Wang noted. Ambassador Wang further stressed that China and NZ, as mutually important and mutually close partners, could build on already strong trading partnership to explore new opportunities for cooperation in areas such as climate and disaster-resilient infrastructure to the mutual benefit of both countries, particularly both peoples.
Minister Russel expressed her gratitude for the generosity and kindness “coming together as one to support the one community of New Zealand”. “What the Chinese community has shown tonight is that it matters as a part of the New Zealand community and that you are reaching out with care and kindness and compassion to the people who have been so badly affected by the cyclone”, sad Dr. Russell.
Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown delivered his speech with “thank you ,our Chinese brothers,for your generosity and contributions”in Chinese language with accute pronounciation.
The chairman of the New Zealand China Friendship Society, Chris Lipscombe, extended his congratulations to the event through video speech.
The event was organized by the New Zealand Huaxing Art Troupe, the Auckland Chinese Cultural Center and the Wellington Chinese Cultural Center, co-sponsored by 24 Chinese community associations, and supported by 21 media partners. Performers from New Zealand Huaxing Art Troupe, NZ Opera House, Baiyun Lion Team, Overseas Chinese Federation and Chinese Women's United Foundation presented a splendid and loving evening party for the audience with songs, dances, peotry recital and instrumental music performance. Chinese painters and art institutions in New Zealand donated nearly 100 works of art for on-site exhibition and charity sale. The evening party and the art exhibition raised a total of $127,440, all of which have been donated directly to the "Cyclone Gabrielle Appeal Fund" initiated by the New Zealand government to help the people in the disaster-hit area carry out post-disaster rebuild.