More than 600 Filipino are expected to take up a welcome opportunity in Ashburton during the next five days, as the Filipino Ambassador Jesus (Gary) Domingo visits the district with Philippine Embassy staff to conduct and process Philippine Consular Services.
The Ambassador and staff will be in Ashburton from Wednesday 16 to Monday 21 May, with Consular Services available at the Information Centre on East Street – provided by the Ashburton District Council, from Thursday 17 May.
These Consular Services are usually conducted monthly, alternating between the North and South Island as well as in Fiji, Samoa, Tonga and the Cook Islands, however this month the Ambassador has made sure to visit Ashburton and Ashburton District Mayor Donna Favel says the Council is pleased to assist.
"It is our great privilege to host the Ambassador and staff of the Philippine Embassy. Filipinos are a growing and important part of our community and we appreciate all that they contribute coming to our district and working in our industries," Mayor Favel says.
There are currently 500 scheduled Filipino Consular Service appointments for the five day visit, however it's anticipated that more than 600 Filipinos from across the South Island will come to Ashburton to access these services, which include processing Philippine Passport Renewals.
Ambassador Domingo will arrive in the district today, and will be meeting with a number of dignitaries, organisations, employers and employees throughout his visit. His schedule includes attending the Ashburton District Council meeting on Thursday 17 May and opening the Inaugural Flores de Mayo (Flowers of May) Festival on Saturday 19 May.
The Ambassador will also meet with MP Andrew Falloon, Federated Farmers, Plains Rotary Club, National Youth Commission Chair Ralph Zambrano and students from Mt Hutt and Ashburton colleges.
A number of local employers have been approached to establish what jobs are available in the district and a summary of these employment opportunities and contacts will be available at the Information Centre should people be looking for alternate employment.