Today marks the first anniversary of Nalanda Education & Outreach (NEO) Centre Johor Bahru. The Centre located in Taman Johor Jaya was launched on 26 May 2013 by Ven. Sri Saranankara Nayaka Thero in the presence of Sangha members, devotees and Nalanda members from all branches.
The idea of setting up NEO Centre in Johor Bahru came about when the branch founders read about Nalanda’s programmes in the newspapers and decided to visit Sri Serdang to see for themselves the work done by Nalanda. They were inspired by the efforts put into community education, especially in the ‘Free School’ Project, and the successful transformation of individuals and society.
Determined to bring the same programmes and culture to Johor Bahru, the branch founders set in motion the effort to establish a similar centre there. Thus the NEO Centre Johor Bahru came about as an inspired desire to perform the ‘Miracle of Education’ down south.
Since its opening, NEO Centre JB has gradually grown into a fully-functioning Buddhist education centre catering to community education. There is a well-stocked library with more than 1,000 titles of reference materials. There are 15 ‘Free School’ classes taught by committed volunteers for hundred-over school-going children. Nalanda Institute’s Dhamma course in Mandarin is run there. There are also plans to establish a branch of Nalanda Dharma School at NEO Centre JB next year.
All these developments would not be possible without the inspiration, dedication, and right effort of many committed members, benefactors, and volunteers in Johor Bahru. We would like to congratulate and commend them for their achievements in the past one year; yet they are able to maintain that eagerness to learn Dhamma, to practise, and to serve. Indeed, this inspired team of Nalandians have themselves become inspiring!
Have a grateful and meaningful anniversary! Sadhu anumodana.