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Buddhism

Back to listAug 13, 2011

New SGI Center Opens in Melbourne, Australia

SGI-Australia (SGIA) Victoria Community Centre At the SGI-Australia (SGIA) Victoria Community Centre in Melbourne

August 13 marked the opening of the SGI-Australia (SGIA) Victoria Community Centre in Melbourne, making it the fourth SGI center in Australia. Councillor Sarah Carter, mayor of Maribyrnong, where the building is located, officially opened the center. Ms. Carter said she was glad to have SGIA in the community and offered the City Council's support.

Opening festivities included piano performances and a song by SGIA youth members. SGI President Daisaku Ikeda sent a congratulatory message for the occasion, saying he hoped the center would become a "forum for cultural exchange."

One young woman commented, "I'm so excited at the potential that the new community center in Victoria has . . .  I, along with the rest of the youth, will definitely use this opportunity to form new friendships and make this a citadel of peace!" Another member said that with the new facility, possibilities for creating opportunities for dialogue and exchange were unlimited, commenting that "It is our responsibility to create value through our factivities here with a spirit of further expanding the circles of trust and friendship in our local community, as Mr. Ikeda has encouraged us to do."

Various public awareness raising activities have already been scheduled for the center, such as the showing of SGIA's exhibition "Dark to Dawn--Being Creative about Depression" on overcoming depression; the SGI and the Earth Charter International's exhibition "Seeds of Hope;" and SGI's antinuclear exhibition "Transforming the Human Spirit."

The building had once been a munitions storehouse. It now begins its new life as a place for promoting the Buddhist ideals of peace and the dignity of life with a bookstore and various meeting rooms. The center's location and contact details can be found at http://www.sgiaust.org.au/contact-us

[Adapted from a report from SGI-Australia; photo courtesy of Seikyo Shimbun]