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Aims & Objects

To provide and foster a friendship network to exchange cultural traditions and share migrant and newcomer settlement issues, in order to create a sense of belonging in the communities of the Clutha District.

  • To promote the Clutha District as a multiethnic society.

  • To provide and promote educational, cultural, and social activities for the Clutha District.

  • To assist in gaining access to information and services in the Clutha District.

  • To provide education and assistance to organisations to be responsive to the needs of newcomers in the Clutha District.

  • To liaise or affiliate with anybody or organization concerned with migrant/newcomers and having similar objects to the society.

  • Any other object which furthers or is incidental to the foregoing objects or which will contribute to the attainment of any of the foregoing objectives.


CDSS Inc. History 

CDSS Inc. is a Registered Charity, CC 53287, established in 2014 and currently services hundreds of residents.

CDSS Inc. Management Committee comprises of a Chair, Deputy Chair, Secretary, Treasurer and six other members. 

Over the years, there has been significant growth in the migrant population of the Clutha District all arriving from at least twelve different countries. The challenges faced by the migrants and newcomers who arrived in the district have long been recognised in the wider community particularly by schools, churches, and social service agencies.

As part of the process in the establishment of CDSS Inc. a Public Forum was held to initiate and facilitate community consultation re migrant and newcomers support in the Clutha District. At this forum key issues were established:

  • Language

  • Accessing Services and Information

  • Employment

  • Immigration Issues


Attendance at the forum represented the Clutha District Migrant Community, the Clutha District Council, residents and community members, local schools, businesses, and the agricultural sector. A working party was formed, and the purpose of this group was “to investigate the provision of assistance and support to newcomers”. The group was formalized and became an incorporated Society in December 2014.

In the years that followed, the key issues identified at the initial forum have not changed.


Our Committee

Santos Jr. Ariola (Dec 2014) 

Maria Hill (Dec 2014) 

Johanne Arndt (Dec 2014)

Susie Wu (March 2019)

Kate Staniford (March 2019)

Farina Shah (April 2019)

Dianne Lowry (Aug 2016)

Ella Broekhuizen (Dec 2015)

Marilou Ariola (Aug 2016)

Gloria McHutchon (Oct 2017)

Some of our past and present Committee Members at the 2018 Culture Feast held at the Balclutha Cross Recreational Centre. 

From left to right: Back row: Dianne Lowry, Maria Hill, Lisa Biginato (Administrator). Front Row: Val Ward, Chris Shaw, Carina Powell, Johanne Arndt, Ella Broekhuizen, Gloria McHutchon. 

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