In the early morning of Sunday 14 March 2010, a group of committed runners gathered in Brisbane’s Bunyaville Conservation Park to take part in the Guajarati’s Association of Queensland’s (GAQ) annual fun run. This event was held to raise money needed to upgrade the Association’s community centre and to increase awareness in the local community on the benefits of physical activity.

(From left to right: Mr Anil Bakrania- President,Gujarati Association of Queensland and Mr Sanjiv Vanmali, Member, Gujarati Association of Queensland.)

The Guajarati Association of Queensland(GAQ)

The GAQ is a non-profit organisation established in 1993, dedicated to providing education on values and cultural heritage to more than 1000 Gujarat families in Queensland. Gujarat is the westernmost state in India with a population of 50.7 million people.

This new community building will welcome all members of the community and will provide networking opportunities to new and current Indian students from Griffith University and surrounding educational institutions.

Amongst others, Griffith’s International Pro Vice Chancellor, Mr Christopher Madden was pleased sponsor this important event.

“This sponsorship highlights Griffith’s commitment to community engagement through active involvement with social and cultural clubs, ethnic groups and associations that include international and domestic students of the university,” Mr Madden said.

The university recognises the significant role these community groups play in promoting cross cultural experiences and positive attitudes that benefit Australia both now and in the future. Such involvement also promotes understanding that underpins tolerance and stability here and abroad.

Building a connection with the wider community is a priority for the Griffith University Community Liaison Group, which was established in an effort to foster improved relations and communication.

Griffith University’s community involvement follows the government’s view that relationships formed amongst students, supports long-lasting diplomatic, research and business links and in addition, builds on Australia’s long multicultural history that has created a friendly, tolerant and secular country.

The GAQ committee raised $2200 dollars during the annual fun run and further events have been scheduled by the Association’s President, Mr Anil Bakrania, to contribute to the community centre upgrades.

“The committee is taking part in further community activities this year for total engagement of our members and friends because it is important to us to facilitate as many activities as possible for cohesion and development of Gujarati Community as well as the wider society,” he said.