Council & City

Welcoming Communities

This two-year pilot programme brings together Council and the community to roll out the welcome mat to newcomers, including migrants, former refugees and international students, as well as New Zealanders relocating to Palmerston North.

Welcoming Communities has been developed in recognition that communities are healthier, happier and more productive when newcomers are welcomed by the existing community.

Creating a welcoming community

Welcoming Communities aims to involve existing residents in activities to welcome newcomers, and increase awareness of the positive social, economic and cultural benefits of diversity. 

It’s about making newcomers feel at home here, that we accept their culture and identity, and that there are opportunities for them to succeed. Having a sense of belonging helps people to settle more quickly, and enhances social cohesion.

Welcoming Communities is part of an international movement that shares best practice. Similar initiatives operate in Australia (Welcoming Cities), Canada (Cities of Migration) and the United States of America (Welcoming America). Palmerston North is one of five regions in New Zealand piloting the programme.

This programme is an initiative of Immigration New Zealand, developed in recognition that welcoming activities enhance understanding and appreciation of each other, leading to stronger and more resilient communities.

Want to know more about the initiative? Please get in touch with our Welcoming Communities Coordinator, Stephanie Velvin.

Phone: 06 356 8199

The Welcoming Communities Standard

The national Welcoming Communities Standard provides us with a benchmark for what a successful welcoming community looks like. It’s made up of eight outcome areas important to creating a welcoming and inclusive city.

Helpful links

If you’re new to New Zealand or to Palmerston North, you might find these resources helpful in getting you settled and started.