Mrs Annie Coates from the Parish of Hataitai-Kilbirnie has been awarded a Queen’s Service Medal for services to ethnic communities.
Mrs Coates has been involved in supporting refugees, particularly from South East Asia, and helping them settle in New Zealand since the mid-1980s. She has provided pastoral care for international students and has been involved with English as a Second Language groups, and she worked as an ESOL teacher at Wellington High School’s Community Education Centre for seventeen years. She was a Cross Culture worker at Refugee Services from 2006 before moving to the Change Makers Refugee Forum in 2009. She has been Chair of the Wellington Myanmar Community, through which she has been involved in a wide range of events from cultural festivals to local sports tournaments and regular pre-school playgroups for young mothers. She was involved in the establishment of the New Horizons for Women organisation in the early 1990s, which was set up to raise funds for scholarships for women who had not been able to undertake tertiary education. She has been a member of Pan Pacific and South East Asian Women’s Association for 30 years and has served as Vice President and President and as Vice President for the Pacific Region on the International Board. Mrs Coates has also volunteered with the City Mission, Mary Potter Hospice and the Cancer Society.
A huge congratulations to you Annie, from everyone in the Diocese! We thank you for your tireless contributions and long-term commitment to caring for those in your community. Well done!