New Zealand Embassy Brasilia, Brazil

New Zealand Ambassador receives warm welcome at Complexo do Alemao municipal school (Rio de Janeiro)

Ambassador Jeffrey McAlister visits school Affonso Várzea, in Rio de Janeiro. Principal Eliane Saback and students welcome the Ambassador with warmth and thank him for the New Zealand books

The New Zealand Ambassador, Jeffrey McAlister, visited the Municipal School Affonso Várzea in Complexo do Alemão, a lower socio-economic community in Rio de Janeiro, as a guest of the city´s Education Secretariat, on 9 July 2013.

The school was recently upgraded to a bilingual institution and had its learning experiences expanded, following the stabilisation of the security situation over the last two years. The visit´s objectives were to raise students’ interest in English language learning, as well as to provide them an opportunity to understand a different culture and career possibility.

Alongside the school principal, Eliane Saback, the students, aged from 6 to 10, interacted with the Ambassador about New Zealand, such as its main cities, traditional food and local animals. Ambassador McAlister gifted students with boxes of New Zealand books for the school’s reading room and library. The children offered a very warm welcome to the Ambassador, including with a “Welcome to Brazil” poster and New Zealand flags handmade especially for the visit.

The Ambassador commented that the visit “was an experience I will never forget.  It was wonderful to meet students with such high motivation to learn.  I hope my visit helped expand the students´ curiosity about my country and also about the English language”.

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