Philippine Embassy mobile consular team visits ChristChurch, New Zealand
The Mobile Consular Team of the Embassy of the Philippines in Wellington rendered its last Mobile Consular Service for 2015 in Christchurch, New Zealand on 19-22 November 2015 held at the Christchurch Migrants Centre. Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Arlene Gonzales-Macaisa led the Mobile Consular Team composed of Mr. Ed Matibag, Ms. Monette Garcia, Ms. Mary Bel Garcia and Mr. Marc Asilom in providing consular services for the benefit of Filipinos in Christchurch and the surrounding areas of the South Island. Consular services availed of included the processing of e-passports, notarial documentations, reports of birth and marriage, dual citizenship, and fingerprinting for NBI forms.
During the Embassy Team’s visit to Christchurch, Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Gonzales-Macaisa attended the Philippine Community Support Services (PCSS) Advisors Meeting of the Christchurch Migrants Centre on 19 November 2015. Organized by Ms. Delia Richards, the meeting was attended by Mr. George Clark of the Christchurch Migrants Centre, Ms. Lana Hart of the Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce (CECC), Ms. Janine Parsons, Area Manager of Immigration New Zealand for Christchurch, Dunedin, and Queenstown, Constable Li’Ying Cai, Asian Liaison Officer of the New Zealand Police in Christchurch, as well as Immigration Advisers, Employers, and Filipino workers. Issues tackled during the meeting were immigration matters, settlement support, health sector and trade union news. Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Gonzales-Macaisa spoke on matters pertaining to the Consular questions of Filipino workers.
The Embassy’s Mobile Consular Team also attended the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Legends’ basketball exhibition game with the basketball team of the Filipino Community in Christchurch on 21 November 2015. In her remarks before the game, Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Gonzales-Macaisa informed the Filipino community in Christchurch of the ongoing Mobile Consular Services being held in Christchurch as well as thanked them for their support for Embassy and the PBA Legends Tour in New Zealand. She also led the ceremonial basketball toss prior to the exhibition game.
Atty. Angelico "Chito" Salud, President and CEO of the PBA called on Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Gonzales-Macaisa at the Christchurch Migrants Centre on 22 November 2015. Present at the call were Mr. Roger Bridge, the current Philippine Honorary Consul General in Christchurch and Mrs. Gretchen Salud. Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Gonzales-Macaisa and Atty. Salud spoke about the promotion of the PBA in New Zealand and discussed possible partnerships with those who are willing to do business with the PBA in the near future. During the call, Atty. Salud was able to personally thank the Filipino Community for their continuous support for the PBA as well as interact with members of the Christchurch Filipino community. He took the time to answer questions about the PBA and its recruitment system opening up possibilities for Filipino youth in New Zealand who may aspire to join the PBA.
Another highlight of the Embassy Team’s visit to Christchurch is the Legal Orientation Seminar organized by Atty. Gene Bagsic, Barrister at Te Mata a Maui Law, in coordination with the Embassy of the Philippines and Ms. Delia Richards of the Christchurch Migrants Centre, to promote greater understanding and knowledge of New Zealand’s laws, procedures and requirements to assist Filipino workers in New Zealand in their stay, work, study and integration in the country. Atty. Bagsic discussed legal matters of interest to Filipino migrants, such as marriage and family relations law, immigration law, wills and trusts, enduring powers of attorney, and dealing with the police and courts. The Legal Orientation Seminar was held at the Christchurch Migrants Centre on 21 November 2015.