The Irish Churches Peace Project, Embrace, Newry District Inter-church Forum and Newry and Mourne Council are working together to deliver a series of events to explore the benefits of cultural diversity to both the indigenous community and those coming from other cultures to live and work in Newry. The first of these events "A Cultural Experience" takes place on Saturday the 26th of April from 10.30am in the Canal Court Hotel.

Peter McDowell, of the Irish Churches Peace Project, said “These events will give local people and those from other countries a chance to discover the richness of cross-cultural engagement.”

The Irish Churches Peace Project is supported by the European Union’s PEACE III Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body. It seeks to work with churches and church related groups to promote good relations, cultural diversity and social cohesion.

Brian Eggins, Chair of the Inter-church Forum, said “Newry is becoming a diverse society. People from many different cultures are making their home here. We want to explore how we can all benefit from this diversity.” The Newry District Inter-church Forum is made up of people from various churches and has organised many events to help build good relations within Newry District.

According to Aneta Dabek of Embrace ‘new residents’ have a lot to contribute to Newry and learning about the local culture will be interesting and helpful for them. Embrace is a group of Christians working together to promote a positive response to people seeking asylum, refugees, migrant workers

The series of events begins with “A Cultural Experience” on Saturday 26 April from 10:30am to 1:00pm in the Canal Court Hotel. This event is free and will provide an opportunity for locals and new residents to explore culture together through music, quizzes and interviews. Aneta Dabek said, “Please come along and join the cultural journey with us. Everyone is welcome.”

Following this there will be a series of two evening workshops and a residential event for locals and new residents to learn more about the challenging issues of culture and the benefits of cultural diversity.

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