The first ever Zone 3 Virtual Conference was held on the 5th and 6th of June 2021, with monthly webinars held in the 17 months leading to the conference. This pioneering event demonstrated the theme of “Unity is Divinity, Purity is Enlightenment” with participation from the representing countries of Zone 3 – Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. The virtual conference format was initially planned as a contingent for the 2020 Pre-World Conference, which was postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this contingency virtual platform became the primary conference as the pandemic continues worldwide in 2021. With Swami as our master planner, we were able to immerse the Conference theme from planning till execution, and successfully deliver a virtual conference into the homes of all devotees across the Zone 3 sector as well as devotees around the world. Over a thousand attendees were seen across both Days 1 and 2 of the Conference.
New South Wales Region West recently commenced a new and exciting initiative to teach important slokas to SSE children who are interested. This initiative, which is part of a wider National initiative from the Education Wing and Devotion Wing, aims to help students learn prayers that will further strengthen their devotional sadhana. Through the chanting of slokas and other prayers, children unknowingly enter the complex world of spiritual awakening with much ease and the roots of their spiritual path are firmly grounded at a young age, in a very delicate and subtle way. The intention of the initiative is to teach simple slokas along with a clear explanation of their meaning. To enable these classes to take place teachers are currently being trained nationally so that they may commence these classes in their respective regions.
In honour of Easwaramma this year, the Ladies wing of Victoria Region West along with the Regional Team planned and conducted a service activity to spread Swami’s love to the wider community. The service could not happen in the month of May, as was initially planned due to Covid restrictions. However, with the easing of restrictions in Victoria, the event took place on Saturday 26 June 2021.
For the past few years, the ladies wing of SSSIO Australia has been proactive in taking part in the Mother’s Day Classic Walk held on Mother’s Day each year to aid research in breast cancer.
The Sathya Sai College Limited, with the generous contributions from devotees over the years, has now been able to embark on the next stage of its building project. The construction of four new classrooms and a walkway commenced on 31 May 2021, with the construction contract being signed on 10 May. The construction began with a wonderful breaking of ground ceremony. The construction of the building is anticipated to be completed before Swami’s birthday on the 23rd of November 2021.
For Easwaramma day this year the SSE children presented an array of delightful programs. There were dances, a play and even a yoga sequence. The children, teachers and parents worked together for a couple of months, preparing for this event.
On the occasion of the 10th Anniversary of Aradhana Mahotsavam, Victoria Region West organised a blood/plasma donation on Sunday 25 April 2021, as from 09.00 AM. The team was assigned two Blood Donor Centres, namely in Werribee and Bundoora. Twenty seven members from the Sri Sathya Sai Organisation volunteered for the service activity, including 6 Young Adults.
As more and more regions start having face to face regional functions, after the temporary shut downs due to the COVID pandemic, we take a look at how Aradhana Mahotsavam was celebrated across the country.
Sri Sathya Sai Organisation of Australia, the Parents & Friends of the school and the staff worked together the last few months to host the community event that was first introduced in 2019 called the “Friendship Fest”. The success of the event can be measured by the number of community members participating and getting to know about the Sri Sathya Sai Organisation through their interaction with members who attended the festival from NSW & QLD centres.
Last month, severe weather events hit New South Wales & South East Queensland bringing in heavy down pour resulting in massive floods around the 2 states. This weather event is assessed to be one of the worst experienced in 50 years. In New South Wales, more than 35,000 people were evacuated to evacuation centres.