The Toroa Project

The Toroa Project offers support to those within the resettled community who would like to undertake creative activities within their local neighbourhoods and make social connections with others also doing these activities.

Funded by New Zealand Lottery Grants and supported by Refugees As Survivors (RASNZ)  the initial pilot phase of the project ran as a pilot programme for six months in 2021 working alongside six individuals from within the former refugee community, pairing them with volunteers from creative community groups such as choirs, dance, theatre and craft groups.

With extended funding from Lottery Grants and the Ethnic Communities Development Fund, in 2022 the Toroa Project moves into a new, larger phase with the ability to work with more people and in more communities.

The name "Toroa" was chosen because the wandering albatross seemed an apt description of the resettled journey across the globe. Just like the toroa, it is hoped that a friendly local will become a buddy and help to settle those who have been forcibly displaced into a community group where they can find a new passion or perhaps return to a beloved arts practice.

Kiwis are known for their hospitality and this programme aims to utilise that, inviting people from specifically chosen community groups to buddy up with the candidate, transport them to a group if necessary and act as a support person for up to six months.

If you are interested in being a part of this project, please contact the project coordinator, Durga Ray, on


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