The Guru Purnima celebrations in WA began with a dynamic performance by the WA Young Adults and SSE children, which followed a story of a contestant on a game show who reflected on three stories that were shared by his Gurus; his mother, his teacher and his SSE teacher, that helped guide him through the game show.
After the performance, we welcomed guest speaker Esben Kaas-Sorensen, the coordinator of Street Connect, one of the services that the NGO Anglicare WA provides. Street Connect is a program that aims to make connections and assist marginalised young people who gather regularly in public places and engage them in positive life changes. The service is provided by a team of Youth Workers who provide daily outreach via the Mobile Youth Resource Centre (the Street Connect Outreach Bus).
Everyone should act on the motto ‘Help Ever; Hurt Never’. Every educated person should engage himself or herself in selfless service to society, with humility and a pure heart.…
You should render service to the destitute, the helpless and the forlorn. When you serve them, you should bear in mind you are serving God Himself in that particular form.
Sathya Sai Baba 1987.
Amongst their other service activities, for over 20 years, members of the Sathya Sai Centres of Perth have been supporting the activities of Street Connect by regularly providing sandwiches, freshly made with loving thoughts, to their team, to be distributed to homeless youth. It was such a humbling experience to hear where the sandwiches – that are made and provided by Sai members every day of the working week – were going and how important a simple sandwich could be in building a connection with the youth on the street. Esben described one particular story of a positive life turn-around that started with a sandwich and was recorded in the West Australian newspaper. He spoke of how grateful he was to the Sathya Sai Organisation for its support, especially knowing that the sandwiches provided were made with love and care. The members also offered at Sai Baba’s lotus feet boxes of soups, dry noodles, long life milk and cereals for Anglicare, that could be easily eaten by hungry youth on the streets. The positive feedback about the service provided by members confirmed their commitment to this very worthwhile activity.
Another event celebrated during the Guru Purnima celebrations was the one-year anniversary of the Serve Our Sai Family (SOS) service initiative. It was launched during the regional Guru Purnima celebrations in 2018 and its objective is to serve the disadvantaged members from the Sai community who may suffer from illness, loneliness or isolation and make them feel loved respected and realise that they are not “the forgotten generation” of our organisation. The SOS service has held two events over the past 12 months and has really highlighted that our Seniors are our Gurus and teachers, with so much wisdom and talent to share. Seniors, young adults and SSE children have come together during these events to singing, dance, and enjoy connecting with one another. To show appreciation to our Sai seniors, each one was provided with a sustainable take home gift, lovingly packed by the members and children.