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Community Partnerships
Since its beginnings in 1959, Sukyo Mahikari has endeavored to make positive contributions to society around the world.
Over the past two decades, members of Sukyo Mahikari in the Ivory Coast and Senegal have planted tens of thousands of trees and helped to revive several national parks to restore the environment in those countries. For this, they have received appreciation and recognition by the local and national governments in those countries.
Sukyo Mahikari in Angola is arranging activities for children, for elderly people, and to beautify urban areas. In 1992, Sukyo Mahikari was officially recognized by the government of Angola. The President of Angola, Mr. José Eduardo dos Santos, as well as Angola’s Ministries of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport; the Family; and the Promotion of Women, have expressed admiration for the efforts of Sukyo Mahikari members in Angola to help rebuild the country.
Sukyo Mahikari also supports projects that can lead to restoration and conservation of the environment. Deforestation and desertification are growing problems worldwide. In cooperation with various local, national, and international organizations, Sukyo Mahikari in several countries has participated in many projects that can help reverse this trend.
In Senegal, Sukyo Mahikari has been participating in a project initiated by heads of state in western and central Africa, to plant a band of trees 3 miles deep and 4,350 miles wide below the widening Sahara Desert, all across the widest part of the continent, from the Senegal capital of Dakar, the westernmost city in Africa, to Djibouti (formerly Somali) on the northeast coast. The aim of this project, known as the Great Green Wall, is to halt the desertification of the countries involved.
Hearing of this project, young Sukyo Mahikari members in Africa contacted the authorities to offer their support. Initially, in 2005, they replanted trees over an area of 185 acres, and in 2006 they covered 623 acres, while the project was still in the pilot study stage. In 2007, together with physical support from government departments in Senegal, they extended the Great Green Wall another 618 acres by planting 25,000 seedlings of Senegal acacia trees. These trees not only tolerate arid conditions, stabilize the soil, and provide humidity, but also yield gum arabic, which is used in the food and pharmaceutical industries and thus provides a potential source of revenue to the area.
In Senegal, other projects included planting cactus hedges to protect domestic animals and people and the protection of various wildlife species including some that are endangered. In many places, besides offering assistance, there is an effort to share practices so that any improvements in their immediate environment can be maintained and built upon.
In both New York and Hawaii, Sukyo Mahikari has received community recognition for environmental cleanup activities.
In August 2004, Los Angeles mayor James Hahn presented Sukyo Mahikari of North America with a proclamation commending the organization for its efforts in helping to create a peaceful and harmonious society.
(View the certificate; click again on the certificate to enlarge.)
Sukyo Mahikari members in the Los Angeles area are working with the mayor's office in the Million Tree Planting program. On October 14, 2006, Sukyo Mahikari members in the greater Los Angeles area participated in the kick-off event in this initiative of the city of Los Angeles in partnership with Tree People, a nonprofit organization founded in 1973 by teenagers to help nature heal the city of Los Angeles. Tree People volunteers have planted more than two million trees in the Los Angeles area—on school campuses, city streets, and the mountains surrounding the city.
In September 2009, Mayor Mufi Hannemann of Honolulu presented Sukyo Mahikari with a certificate declaring September 27 to be Sukyo Mahikari Day in Honolulu in recognition of beach and park cleanup activities there over the past ten years.
(View the certificate; click again on the certificate to enlarge.)