Human Rights 2000A Festival For Change
Founders Park, Nelson, New Zealand
In December 1998, the Universal Income Trust presented a weekend of entertainment and workshops celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The focus was on the full implementation of the International Bill of Human Rights for the Year 2000 in Aotearoa NZ. The festival was supported by the Nelson Provincial Arts Council, and a diverse array of community groups and businesses. Kaumatua, Richard Wallace and the Maori Culture Group from the Whakatu Marae provided a tangata whenua opening ceremony.
Key spokespeople at the festival included Areta Koopu, Human Rights Commissioner and member of the Waitangi Tribunal; Ross Brereton, South Island Human Rights Commissioner; Bob Newson, Kaiwhakarite for the Human Rights Commission – Maori Advisor; Colin Aikman, one of the original signatories and drafters of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; Paul Hunt, recent NZ elected official to sit on the United Nations’ Committee for the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and Patrick Danahey, Chairperson of the Universal Income Trust.
Indoor and outdoor performances at five different stages occurred simultaneously with workshops and displays on human rights issues throughout the two day festival. Over 200 performers representing the diverse array of the region's culture groups, musical, and performance styles volunteered their talents for the event. About 2000 people showed up or the event.
Areta Koopu Human Rights Commissioner in opening ceremony: Right.
Left Colin Aikman, Paul Hunt, Ross Brereton, and Bob Newson opening ceremony
Filipino Dancers to the left Patrick Danahey of UIT and Richard Wallace Kaumatua of Whakatu Marae