The International Friendship Center recently hosted its Christmas Celebration, which acted as both a unification of the local Indian community and a celebration of its 10th anniversary.
Sam Gorlla, president of IFC, said the event was aimed to connect the local Indian community together, invite all others to join and bridge the gap between the east and western worlds and their cultures.
“The goal of the event is to bring people together to enjoy the celebration and also make friendships with each other, to get to know each other,” said Gorlla. “You know, India – it’s not one language, there are many different languages and people. So, we had representation from Telugu, which is in the South, from north India we had a combination [of] Gujarat [and] Punjabi, so these are all within range of the 150 that attended.”
As Gorlla stated, India is multifaceted and contains a wide and diverse variety of cultures. The event on Dec. 10 aimed to bring together these many cultures through songs, dances, speeches and comments and addresses by prominent members of the community.
Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, delivered a video message to the event and Joe Messina, William S. Hart Union High School District board member, was in attendance. Gorlla said having people from outside the Indian community was another important aspect of the celebration.
“There were also locals here… from here they also came to make friendships with people of other nationalities, bring their fabric together,” said Gorlla. “For diversity, for a stronger America. We want to bring together diversified cultures into friendship and have a stronger community.”