News/Promo

FIMO Interfaith Guide Launch

On the 7th of February, 2016, the Federation of Indian Origin Multi-Faith Organisation Inc (FIMO) celebrated the launch of the Indian Interfaith Guide at Museum India (61-63 Foster St, Dandenong VIC 3175). The Interfaith Guide was funded by the State Government of Victoria’s Office of Multicultural Affairs and Citizenship (OMAC), and produced by FIMO to foster greater harmony and understanding within the community. The festive event was also a celebration of both Australia Day and Indian Republic Day, which fell on 26th of January. Key dignitaries Gabrielle Williams MP for Dandenong (representing the Premier Hon Daniel Andrews MP and the Minister for Multicultural Affairs Hon. Robin Scott MP), Tim Smith Member for Kew (representing Hon. Matthew Guy, the Leader of the Opposition), Victoria Heidi MP,  Julian Hill (Labor Candidate for Bruce), Gary Spencer (Liberal Candidate for Isaacs), City of Greater Dandenong Mayor Cr Heang Tak, Cr Wayne Smith (City of Casey) and Nirmal K Chawdhary Head of Chancery and Consul (representing the Indian Consular General) came together to launch the Indian Interfaith Guide. The event was hosted by both FIMO, the Confederation of Indian Australian Association Inc (CIAA) and Museum India. The dinner was sponsored by Indrajeet Magar from Western Union NSW and catered by Tandoori Junction.

Sunday’s event was unique for the Indian multi-faith community, as it was the first time a document such as this had been created with vast community input. The evening was attended by over 100 dignitaries. In attendance were presidents of community organisations, leaders of faith groups, service providers and the media. In addition to Indian community leaders, FIMO also had representatives from the Afghani, Bangladeshi, Fiji Indian, Mauritian and Sri Lankan communities, who came together in support of this community strengthening initiative.

 

Interfaith Guide Launch

 

The official proceedings commenced with a welcome address from the President Mr Paramjit Jaswal who welcomed all and thanked OMAC for their support. He also expressed his gratitude to his team, the FIMO Executive Committee for compiling the Interfaith Guide.

The launch was successful, garnering bi-partisan support. Key speakers Gabrielle Williams MP, Tim Smith MP and Mayor Cr Heang Tak acknowledged FIMO’s efforts in creating the guide, the importance of understanding faiths and recognised the value of Museum India to the Indian community, displaying a willingness to work with the Museum India Trust to better the space. Dr Seham Muhsen Ali Al-Shwayli from FIMO’s Multi-Faith Reference Committee left the gathering with closing remarks on her research, which focused on the integration of Muslim migrant women and children in the Australian Society.

MC for the evening founder and trustee of FIMO, Chair of CIAA and Australian Multicultural Council Member, Vasan Srinivasan highlighted the value of such a resource by asserting “Victoria has a proud multicultural history. It is incumbent upon all Victorians to protect this important legacy, built up over many generations. During internationally challenged times, there is an additional duty to understand the people with whom we share this country.”

Dignitaries

 

The Indian Interfaith Guide is a resource that gives readers information on various social norms and practices of adherents of the various faiths. The Guide is to be utilised by mainstream services, the courts, community organisations, religious sectors, government, non-government bodies and individuals. This document is regarded as a vital step to proactively addressing the potential causes of conflict, difference and prejudice in the community as it relates to those of Indian origin. 

The FIMO Interfaith Guide has limited hardcopy availability at Museum India and will have a flipbook version available for all to view online.

 

Revati Ilanko | Executive Officer

 


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