Western Region Bengali School (WRBS) is an ethnic language school targeting the second generation Australian Bangladeshis living in the north and western suburbs of Melbourne. However, it is open to all Australian Bangladeshi living in Victoria. WRBS formed in 2006, in Hoppers Crossing, Victoria with goals of promoting Bangla literacy and numeracy and passing on the rich Bangladeshi cultural heritage to our next generation Australian-Bangladeshi. The school has come a long way since its inception as an entity that currently has 152 enrolled students.
To meet the increasing needs of our rapidly growing Bangladeshi community here in Victoria, over the years WRBS council have taken different initiatives to support the community and formed following additional entities:
•Western Region Islamic Class for Children (in operation);
•Western Region Islamic Class for Adults (in operation);
•Victorian Bangla Mobile Library (in operation);
•Victorian Bangladeshi Sports Club (in operation); and
•Victorian Bangladeshi Women’s Advancement (Proposed).
As the activities and tasks have evidenced a sustained growth in running various wings, it is now becoming increasingly difficult for WRBS to cope up with the community needs and discharge its responsibilities to coordinate all other wings as listed above.
Dear friends, at this moment our community’s dominant demand is to have our permanent venue for the school that can also be used as community hub. This requires significant contribution from the community as well as securing various government funding. At this moment we are unable to secure various grants or government benefits in the name of WRBS to raise funds for establishing our own venue. Similarly, our other wings are unable to apply for grants for their activities in the name of WRBS. Also, WRBS is not eligible to be registered as tax deductible gift or donation recipient. To overcome these barriers, we are in need to bring all the entities under one umbrella and form a parent body under which all other wings including WRBS will operate more effectively and our community’s benefits can be maximised through various government funding available.
You would be delighted to know that in line with these objectives, WRBS council has taken initiative to establish a parent organization which will lead and represent the greater community to meet up our current and future needs. This organization will be totally non political and non religious. Accordingly, WRBS council is pleased to announce the name of this parent organization as “Victorian Bangladeshi Community Foundation (VBCF)” with the goal to “Bring the Community Together” and work collaboratively with its component organizations for the benefit of Bangladeshi community living in Victoria. VBCF, once functional, will take necessary initiative to secure funding to establish permanent venue for Western Region Bengali School and also for the community as a whole. The proposed venue would also serve as social complex/hub for the Bangladeshi community living in Victoria - a long cherished dream of the community. It is not an easy task; however if we can engage the community, we believe we can achieve this goal. WRBS council is therefore, urging the community to extend their support and rally behind VBCF.