More than 200 people representing a cross-section of the resident community gathered t the Celebrating Age Centre in Hamilton on October 23 to mark the Festival of Lights, reinstating their mutual respect and love for each other.
As well as a number of organisations and individuals from the Indian ethnicity, participants in the evening’s function included the Chinese Golden Association, Hamilton Girls High School, Punjabi Ladies Cultural Committee, Sa Re Ga Ma School, the Thai Community and the Waikato Columbian Community.
The Diwali Festival, though modest, was impressive and purposeful.
Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) Waikato Inc organised the Festival to promote multiculturalism and interfaith.
Doctoral Candidate Todd Nachowitz spoke about interfaith from the Jewish perspective and its enforcement by occasions like Diwali
Ethnic Affairs Department Ethnic Advisor Sandra Mackenzie was the chief guest at the event, along with Government officials and other dignitaries.
GOPIO Waikato honoured Harkrishan Singh Kung and Harry Dhaliwal for their services to the community through the Indian Cultural Society, which marked its 20th Anniversary recently.
GOPIO Waikato President Ms Kapoor presented a cheque containing proceeds of the evening to Ekal Vidyalaya, an India-based non-governmental organisation promoting the health and education of unprivileged children.