How welcoming are Southland communities and what can be done to help those new to the region settle in?

Venture Southland is undertaking a survey to determine how welcoming the Southland region is for newcomers.

The survey is part of the Welcoming Communities’ pilot, which is being led by Venture Southland.

Southland has been selected as one of five regions to pilot the initiative, which encourages councils, and their communities, to work together to make New Zealand more welcoming for everyone.

The pilot is funded by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and involves the Invercargill City Council, Southland District Council and Gore District Council.

Venture Southland welcoming communities advisor Sue Morrison-Bailey said the pilot will build upon Southland’s strong sense of community and encourage new cultures and traditions to be embraced in the region.

The survey will ask what activities are taking place in Southland to people to Southland, she said.

Feedback will be obtained from the community, business sector and local government.

“The feedback from the survey will show us what is currently happening in the community,” she said.

A welcome plan will then be formulated for Southland and rolled out to for newcomers to the region, she said.

Morrison Bailey said there already lots of activities taking place to welcome newcomers and that the survey will enable the region to take stock of these.

The community survey is available here and runs until 23 February 2018.