Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Citizenship Nicholas Kotsiras today invited Victorians to celebrate and participate in Cultural Diversity Week – 17 to 25 March.
Mr Kotsiras said Cultural Diversity Week was about all Victorians coming together.
“It is a week when we all share, engage, learn from and experience our diverse traditions, cuisines, music and faiths,” Mr Kotsiras said.
“Cultural Diversity Week highlights Victoria’s leadership in harnessing social, cultural and economic benefits of cultural and linguistic diversity.”
Mr Kotsiras emphasised Melbourne as a key destination for international students, the state’s multicultural services, diverse cuisines, arts, events and cultural tourism assets as the best in Australia.
“The economic and social benefits multiculturalism offers Victoria suggests we should cherish and preserve our cultural and linguistic diversity,” Mr Kotsiras said.
The Cultural Diversity Week will be launched by the Premier on Saturday 17 March on St Patrick’s Day as Victorians celebrate vibrant Irish culture.
“Over 200 community groups, schools and local councils will participate in Cultural Diversity Week,” Mr Kotsiras said.
“Cultural Diversity Week inspires groups to participate in, engage with and present their intangible cultures through music, dance, cuisine, and the arts.”
The week concludes on 25 March with the Viva Victoria Festival at Federation Square – an eruption of music, dance and diverse cuisines.
Mr Kotsiras reaffirmed Victorians’ right to live without fear of discrimination by pointing to the United Nations’ International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination that will be held on 21 March 2012.
For information on Viva Victoria go to www.multicultural.vic.gov.au