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On September 10, Taiwan's Ministry of the Interior (MOI) presented Taiwan Soka Association (TSA) with the "Outstanding Religious Organization" award in a conferral ceremony held at the New Taipei City Government Multi-Purpose Hall. This is the 11th time that TSA has received the award. TSA was one of some 250 religious organizations to be awarded out of a total of 15,000 such organizations. The Ministry also gave TSA the Executive Yuan award, based on the fact that TSA has received the "Outstanding Religious Organization" award each year for ten consecutive years.
The conferral ceremony was hosted by Interior Minister Lee Hong-yuan, who lauded TSA and other award winners for their promotion of a harmonious society through charitable activities and said that he hoped all the groups would continue affecting positive change in Taiwan.
Over the years, TSA has organized and participated in many community-oriented activities. One regular initiative is the Soka Joy Summer Camp organized by TSA student members for elementary school children in remote mountain and island villages where educational resources are limited.
Since 2003, TSA has also organized a series of free art exhibitions titled "Tracing our Cultural Legacy: 100 Years of Art History in Taiwan" in nine of its art and culture centers throughout Taiwan. These exhibitions have featured the work of numerous influential artists, including Chen Cheng-po, Hung Ken-shen, and Li Shi-chi. Videos of these exhibitions form the basis of TSA's Mobile Museum initiative to introduce art to children who might not otherwise have the opportunity to view such exhibitions due to financial or geographical limitations.
In acknowledgement of TSA's longstanding efforts to promote the arts and art education, and on the recommendation of Fung Ming-chu, chairman of the Chinese Association of Museums and director of the National Palace Museum, TSA has recently been made a member of the Chinese Association of Museums.
[Adapted from articles in the September 24 and October 15, 2013, issues of Harmony Press, Taiwan Soka Association (TSA); photos courtesy of Harmony Press]
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