The launch of Migrant Journeys was a great success, with many wonderful speakers and a true feeling of celebration.
The free event was held at the National Library on Thursday evening, 19 November, and speakers included the Mayor of Wellington, Celia Wade-Brown, economist and BWB author Shamubeel Eaqub, and Executive Director of the New Zealand Taxi Federation, Roger Heale.
The two editors of the book, Adrienne Jansen and Liz Grant, spoke warmly of the drivers themselves, and their huge appreciation for being allowed to share their stories in this way. One of the drivers from the book, Helmi Al Khattat, spoke beautifully of his personal journey as a migrant to New Zealand.
Helmi Al Khattat. Photo credit: Settlement Unit, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
Also celebrated at the launch was I Have in My Arms Both Ways: Migrant Women Talk about their Lives, edited by Adrienne Jansen. First published in 1990, this timely reprint, with an updated format and a new Preface by Adrienne Jansen, is a collection of the rarely told stories of immigrant women in New Zealand, and the rich experiences of lives spent in other cultures.