PEOPLE from all over the world have settled in Warrnambool and are proud to call the seaside city home.
Warrnambool offers many opportunities for residents to come together and share their culture within the community.
Social language meet-ups occur weekly in the city, organised by Warrnambool language teachers Laura Rojas-Serrano, Jill Oppermann and Carlos Del Rio.
The informal gatherings are held for people of all nationalities to preserve their language and culture and give new residents an opportunity to meet other people in the community.
“I believe there are a lot of people here in Warrnambool that are very skilled and can help us become a hub for languages in the south-west,” Ms Rojas-Serrano said.
She said the free gatherings included language lesson exchanges and document deciphering, while preserving and practising their native tongue.
The sessions are held at Laganas Pizza Restaurant on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.
The annual Gnatannwarr Multicultural Festival is held as a part of the Wunta Fiesta in February and is a celebration of cultural diversity in the city.
Gnatannwarr means welcome or hello and is the traditional welcome of the Gunditj-mara and Kirrae Whurrong people, the original custodians of the lands around Warrnambool.
The festival involves more than 25 diverse community groups and individuals from Sudan, Sri Lanka, Netherlands, India, Middle East, the Philippines, Ireland, Scotland and Africa.
The festival showcases food, music and dance.
Warrnambool Primary School also recognise the diverse multiculturalism at their school.
The gym is proudly adorned with the flags from every nationality represented at the school and grade five teacher Jacqui Gore said the school had a strong focus on exploring diversity, compassion and the importance of being a global citizen.
“Within my class I have covered many areas, from indigenous Australians to searching our own family histories, generally giving my students a global awareness and understanding,” she said.
n Read more stories about why people love living in the south-west by picking up a copy of The Standard’s Live Work Invest magazine from local council offices.