25 May 2016 at 9:00 am

New Zealand’s education story screening in Colombia

Education New Zealand’s awareness-raising campaign in Latin America took broadcast route recently, with the hosting of a Colombian television crew.

The ‘Contador de Historias’ storyteller himself, Alvaro Velez Isaza, recording a piece to camera with the spectacular Lyttelton harbour as backdrop.

ENZ Senior Communications Advisor, Rose O’Connor, had the pleasure of spending a week with a television crew from Colombia recently, during which New Zealand turned on the very best of its crisp and sparkly autumn weather, and Christchurch treated the group to an impressive display of flame-coloured trees.


L-R: Cameraman, Jimmy Torres Bravo; Producer, Viviana Arjona Parra; Presenter/Director, Alavaro Velez Isaza; Kiwi UC student Hapi Tohiariki; and Colombian UC student Daniel Trocez enjoyed the spectacle of the Crusaders’ victory over the Reds

The warm Aotearoa welcome was matched by the warmth and generosity of the stars of the show – Natascha Diaz, a PhD student at Auckland University of Technology; and Daniel Trochez, a B. Comm. student at the University of Canterbury. Natascha and Daniel invited us in to their lives and shared their stories with us, and the participating institutions opened their doors and allowed the crew to capture footage of the campuses that will enable a rich story to be told.

From a backyard Kiwi barbecue to a Friday night rugby game; ice creams on the beach to pies in AUT’s Hikuwai Plaza; interviews with the students, their friends, homestay families and university lecturers – we were able to build a strong picture of Natascha and Daniel’s lives in New Zealand. Their stories will be told to a potential audience of 10 – 12 million in Colombia, via a popular programme called ‘Contador de Historias’ (The Storyteller). The programme is also broadcast extensively across the Americas.


Alvaro being greeted with a hongi by tour guide Gaz, before heading down to Piha beach. 

The visit was the first time in New Zealand for all members of the TV crew, and the first time out of Colombia for the young woman from our PR agency, Viviana. They all declared their love for New Zealand and vowed to return.

The presenter/director of the show, Alavaro Velez Isaza, expressed in a recent email:

“This was an invaluable experience that surely will be reflected in the chronicles we will see in our program Contador de Historias that our Latin American audience will appreciate, through your eyes that were ours throughout the tour.”


The crew declared a preference for New Zealand’s style of coffee making!

Visits such as this are the result of collaboration between ENZ, education providers and the students themselves. While we’re in the thick of famil-season, with both agents and media touring the country, ENZ would like to thank all those involved in their organisation and hosting. The success of such visits relies heavily on our ability to provide meaningful, relevant and high-impact programmes, and it is the support that we receive from our industry partners that helps us achieve this.

We’ll share the link once the programme once available, but in the meantime you can follow this link to view the teaser.

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