Brisbane, June 7 (IANS): A grand display of lanterns, lights and music will celebrate diversity in the Australian state of Queensland on Friday, with the intention of making every person, no matter where they come from, feel welcome and a part of the community.
Now in it’s 12th year, the annual LUMINOUS festival will see thousands of people parade along the river foreshore in the state capital of Brisbane, carrying lanterns in the shape of iconic Australian symbols, reports Xinhua news agency.
“Light from the giant lanterns and lamps in the parade, as well as thousands of LED candles in the crowd, is a symbolic of lighting the way forward to a welcoming and harmonious community,” Multicultural Affairs Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said.
This year the lanterns will include a koala, owl and kangaroo, as well as the the Rainbow Serpent, a mythical creator of the earth according to indigenous tradition.
Following the parade audiences can enjoy cultural performances from across Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Australia.
The event is hosted by Multicultural Development Australia (MDA), an organisation aimed at guiding successful multi-culturalism across Queensland.
A 2016 census showed that 21.6 per cent of the state’s population were born overseas.
“LUMINOUS helps new Queenslanders feel a sense of inclusion and belonging, while celebrating the rich cultural contributions of our diverse communities,” MDA Chief Executive Kerrin Benson said.