“Seeds of Hope: Visions of Sustainability, Steps Toward Change” exhibition opens in Tauranga

posted on 1 November 2012

The exhibition Seeds of Hope opened on October 18th in Tauranga with over 80 guests attending 2 ceremonies - thanks to the SGI members in Tauranga and support of SGI members in other cities, as well as many members of the Tauranga community.

The opening ceremony at the Creative Tauranga art gallery was followed by the ribbon cutting at the Goddards Centre where the panels are on display. Tracey Rudduck from Creative Tauranga was the MC, and guest speakers included Tauranga Mayor Stuart Crosby, United Nations Association of New Zealand (UNANZ) President Graham Hassall, 17 year-old New Zealand Youth delegate to Rio+20 Erin Murphy, and SGINZ General Director Jimi Wallace.

Seeds of Hope will be held at the Goddards Centre until November 10.
Below are some comments from the speakers 
Stuart Crosby, Mayor of Tauranga
“I want to acknowledge SGI locally and all the other organisations represented here today which have similar philosophies…I am delighted to see these philosophies being embraced by our youth. To me, that is what sustainability is all about. We (the older generation) are creating the opportunities for change, but it is the youth that are actually making the changes.”
United Nations Association of New Zealand (UNANZ) President Graham Hassall
“Seeds of Hope- Individuals making a difference. Each panel looks at ways in which very ordinary people- humble people from different parts of the world have decided to be active. That is what SGI is about and what the United Nations is about.” 
SGINZ General Director Jimi Wallace
Introduced SGI President Daisaku Ikeda’s 2012 environmental proposal to Rio+20 quoting, “there has been welcome progress in encouraging learning and reflection. But unless this gives rise to empowerment and, beyond that, to the exercise of leadership, it will not generate real transformation.”  And said “How vital it is that we each develop a sense of and exercise leadership for the environment, for sustainability, for the future based on example with faith in the potential of one person to make a difference.”  
Erin Murphy (one of 4 NZ Youth Ambassadors who went to Rio +20)
“Rio +20 inspired me to want to be a part of the global community and help to ensure that the sustainable future we want is achieved not just in New Zealand but around the world.
This conference made me realise that all you have to do is to start caring about our planet, about the animals and people, all the plants that live on it. It is rthat simple.

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Wellington Mayor Commends SGINZ, Announces Support For Peace Heritage Walk

posted on 4 October 2012

Mahatma Gandhi birthday commemoration held at the Gandhi statue

Mahatma Gandhi birthday commemoration held at the Gandhi statue

Wellington City Mayor Celia Wade-Brown announced Council support for the Peace Heritage Walk at the Mahatma Gandhi birthday commemoration held at the Gandhi statue at Wellington’s railway station on 2 October. The event was hosted by the Council and the Wellington Indian Association.

“The Peace Heritage Walk is an asset to the city and includes monuments and sculptures dedicated to peace, including the Hiroshima Peace Flame.

“I’m delighted to announce the Council’s support for the Peace Walk.

Mayor Wade-Brown commended the work of the Buddhist peace group Soka Gakkai International of New Zealand, as a Wellington community group, for assuming the stewardship of the Peace Heritage Walk.

“There is a lot of potential to refresh awareness of the walk as another wonderful attraction for Wellington and to reinforce our support for peace,” she says.

The Peace Heritage Walk is a public walk connecting monuments and sculptures dedicated to peace in Wellington’s inner city.   Formerly managed by the Peace Foundation of Wellington, SGINZ assumed management of the Peace Walk in July 2012.

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Wellington City Council and Soka Gakkai International of New Zealand Host United Nations International Day of Peace

posted on 29 September 2012

On a perfect spring day on Friday 21 September, over 100 people gathered to celebrate the United Nations International Day of Peace at the Peace Flame in Botanical Gardens in Wellington.

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A Path to Dignity: The Power of Human Rights Education

posted on 21 September 2012

Human Rights Education Associates (HREA), Soka Gakkai International (SGI) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) have jointly produced this film as a tool to raise awareness about the positive role that human rights education can play in fulfilling human rights.

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