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Community Services, Saffron Kitchen

Wyndham Interfaith Network

 

 

 

The Wyndham Interfaith Network was set up in March 2010 and counts over twenty religious and community representatives of diverse religions and beliefs in the third fastest growing Local Government Area in Australia.

 
 

The primary aim of the Network is to enhance Wyndham’s reputation as a welcoming environment for people of all backgrounds, faiths and spiritual beliefs. This is especially important given the growing number of residents of diverse backgrounds who are settling in the area, not least those from refugee backgrounds lacking organized community support structures such as the Karen Burmese and Sudanese.

The Network, auspiced by the Wyndham Community & Education Centre Inc., is a vital link in the integration of these communities with mainstream life, in fostering greater understanding and respect for their religious and cultural beliefs, vital in building a cohesive and harmonious society.

 

 

A Mission Statement of the Network has been adopted and preliminary work has also been conducted towards establishing a Young People’s Interfaith Network.

Generously supported through funding by the Victorian Multicultural Commission and Wyndham City, Network members are actively involved in many innovative community building programs such as the annual Clean Up Australia Day, National Tree Planting Day, Australia Day and the Wyndham Multifaith Dinner which attracts over 250 residents.

In past years, the Network has also conducted a series of community education seminars titled “Know your Neighbours” that seeks to bring broad understanding between newly-arrived and older established community groups.

The links formed through these events have led to greater participation of Wyndham residents in major social and cultural gatherings such as the Wyndham Multicultural Festival, Weerama Festival, Diversity Week and Harmony Day etc.

The Network’s activities supplement the work of the Wyndham Humanitarian Network, set up in 2006 to assist new arrivals to Wyndham, especially those from refugee backgrounds, and is focused on providing a “whole person” approach towards their integration with mainstream life.

The underlying theme of the Network is to highlight and strengthen the issues that unite rather than divide diverse communites. The success of its activities to date attest to the acceptance and commitment of Wyndham residents in achieving this goal.