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Friday, July 19, 2024

The Only Sri Lankan Community Newspaper in New Zealand

Sinhala and Tamil New Year 2024 – Wellington

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SrilankaNZhttps://www.srilankanz.co.nz
ශ්‍රී LankaNZ is a free distributed Sri Lankan Community Newspaper that aims to reach a Sri Lankan population of over 18,000 all over New Zealand. The demand for entertainment in literacy media itself gave birth to ශ්‍රී LankaNZ

The Sri Lankan Sinhala and Tamil New Year is a heartfelt occasion that draws us together to honour our shared heritage, no matter how far we find ourselves from our beloved homeland. Living far from Sri Lanka, we’ve built a vibrant community abroad that holds our sense of “apekama” — our togetherness — dearly.

Organized by the United Sri Lankan Association, this year’s New Year event bridged the gap we often feel during the festive season. In the days leading up to the celebration, the community came together to transform a simple hall into a slice of home. We prepared traditional sweets, cooked festive meals, and set up games, recreating the communal spirit of gathering at Mahagedara back in Sri Lanka. This collective effort not only brought us closer but also deepened our connection, reflecting the unity and shared purpose that makes our community so special.

As we stepped into the decorated hall, a wave of nostalgia washed over us. The setting was a vivid tapestry of Lankan culture, buzzing with the warmth of Awurudu. It was a joy to see so many familiar faces, as well as new ones, all adorned in traditional attire, coming together as if we were back home. This gathering was a poignant reminder of the home we long for, especially during this festive season.

The event was further enlivened by traditional drumming and dancing, beautifully performed by the Sri Lankan Dance Academy and the Sri Lankan Association of New Zealand. These performances added vibrant splashes of colour to the celebration. Another highlight was the traditional food, a rare treat that we usually have just once a year. The dedication poured into preparing these delights was evident and greatly appreciated — every bite was a taste of home.

But the heart of the celebration was undoubtedly the New Year games. The games, designed for both young and old by the organizing committee, showcased the welcoming and friendly spirit of our culture. Even among those we had just met, there was an instant connection, as if we had known each other for years. It’s this cultural blend, this essence of apekama, that truly defines us.

New Year’s is fundamentally about people — about community. This event beautifully encapsulated the value Maori values of Manaakitanga and Whanaungatanga, reminding us that though we may come from different walks of life, we are all children of the same motherland. This celebration was not just a marking of a new year; it was a reaffirmation of our bonds, our shared joys, and our collective spirit.

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ශ්‍රී LankaNZ(ශ්‍රී ලංකන්ස්) is a free distributed Sri Lankan Community Newspaper that aims to reach a Sri Lankan population all over New Zealand. If you would like to appreciate our commitment, please consider a contribution.