The Canberra Multicultural Community Forum is one of the supporters of a Language Expo celebrating 2008 as the International Year of Languages on Sunday, September 28.

CMCF Committee Member and Education Adviser Dr Mandy Scott said the Forum has joined with the University of Canberra, which is hosting the event, and the ACT Ethnic Schools Association in the venture which is aimed at showcasing the many languages and cultures which make up the ACT and region.

“It is also an opportunity for people to find out where they can go in the ACT to learn a particular language, for themselves or their children,” she said. “As an example we will have workshops in Indonesian, Mandarin, Greek, Korean, Arabic and Gamilaraay, an indigenous language of NSW, at the Expo and that is really only the tip of the iceberg.”

Other activities will include a panel discussion for parents raising a child in more than one language, and language as a career asset, language development activities for preschoolers and instruction in Japanese and Cyrillic writing. With an election pending local politicians have been invited to outline their policies on language education at a panel discussion between 2pm and 3pm

For a change of pace there will also be ethnic food stalls and dance presentations.

Dr Scott said the theme of the Expo will be ‘Travel Round the World in a Day’. “To support this we are producing our own passports which people can take round with them and get stamped for each language they know or learn about on the day,” she said. “There will be discount vouchers from the Asia Bookroom for anyone who collects 15 stamps or more.”

Our aim is to demonstrate to everyone that languages are fun.”

The Expo will be held at the University of Canberra Buildings 1 and 2 and on the Main Concourse from 10am to 5pm on Sunday. Admission is free and the media are welcome to attend.

The full program can be found at

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