Meals for the Homeless at St. Anthony of Padua Church, Italy

Several years ago, the Sathya Sai Centre of Bologna began working with a group of volunteers led by Don Giovanni Nicolini, parish priest of St. Anthony of Padua’s Church at La Dozza, near Bologna. The volunteers supported an initiative, known as Piano Freddo (Cold Weather Plan), to provide local refugees and homeless people with shelter and hot meals during the chilly winter months of December through March. Members of the Sathya Sai Centre of Bologna prepared vegetarian meals and served dinner to more than 200 people on the second Saturday of each month, with the help of 15 volunteers from the parish.

Regional Retreat in Germany

During 6th to 8th May 2016, about 80 SSIO members and office bearers from southern Germany gathered at Wartaweil, near Lake Ammersee, for a regional retreat on the theme, “Human Values – Our Inner Treasure.” The group divided into three focus groups to concentrate on the major aspects of the theme. In the “Love in Action” group, Read More

Conference in Northwest Russia

From 4th–7th May 2016, the SSIO hosted a conference in the northwest region of Russia near St. Petersburg. Approximately 183 SSIO members from Russia as well as six neighbouring countries participated in the conference, themed “Unity through Love, Love through Unity.” On the first day, Ms. Marianne Meyer, a director of the Sri Sathya Sai World Foundation and member of the Prasanthi Council, and Ms. Inga Pikullel addressed the group. Ms. Meyer emphasised Read More

Humanitarian Relief for Earthquake Victims in Japan

On 14th April 2016, a strong earthquake of magnitude 6.5 rattled the Kumamoto area of Kyushu, followed by a second quake of magnitude 7.3 on 16th April 2016. The two earthquakes caused the death of at least 49 people and injuries to about 3,000 others. Severe damage occurred in the affected areas, with numerous structures collapsing and catching fire. More than 44,000 people were evacuated from their homes. Shortly thereafter, the SSIO of China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan joined relief efforts by the authorities to assist communities that had been devastated by the earthquakes. On 2nd May 2016, Sathya Sai volunteers of Japan visited five evacuation shelters in Kumamoto – in Mashikimachi, Kashimamachi and Nishiharamura, and distributed free-standing tents, tent flooring coated with aluminium film, sweets, juice, fruit, blue sheets, towels, packing tape, and other items. Food, water, and daily necessities were provided to approximately 100 evacuees, mostly elderly, at the Kashima Higashi Elementary School. The offerings were particularly welcomed by the seniors, as the shelter lacked such amenities. On 3rd May 2016, Sathya Sai volunteers supplied electric fans and other equipment to a small isolated community of elders in Kosobu, Shiranuhimachi, in Uki-city. Sathya Sai volunteers also distributed free-standing tents, tent floors coated with aluminium film, toilet rolls, adult diapers, sanitary napkins, wet wipes, hand sanitisers, and isotonic powder to evacuees taking refuge at the Chouyou civic gymnasium in Minami-Aso village. Free-standing tents were likewise distributed to 10 people at the Ezu 7th Community Centre in Shimomuta, Ezumachi, Kumamoto city. These people had taken up living in a parking lot, as many houses in the area had collapsed. Tents, bedding, and portable toilets were distributed to residents of Ezu 3rd Community. On 5th May 2016, the SSIO distributed 108 pots of Udon noodles, four laundry machines, 120 “long-life” steamed rice packages, 10 waterproof tarpaulin sheets, 48 bottles of green tea, an electric rice cooker, a clothes rack, and 36 two-litre bottles of mineral water to local residents. On 7th May 2016, 60 meals were offered to refugees, in continuation of humanitarian relief services.