In April 2023, the CORE Forum met their member organization’s, the Finnish Buddhist Union (SBU)’s board, at Helsinki’s Oodi Library, as well as representatives from their observer member organization, the Finnish Hindu Forum, at the ISKCON Finland temple in Helsinki. The purpose of these meetings was to strengthen our collaboration.
During the meetings, discussions revolved around current topics and the challenges faced by Buddhists and Hindus in Finland. Small religious communities in Finland share several common challenges, including fundraising, burial practices, and community organization. These challenges can be addressed collaboratively through interfaith cooperation. We aim to promote different religious minorities’ possibilities to participate and advocate for their rights. Both the Finnish Buddhist Union and the Finnish Hindu Forum possess unique expertise representing their respective religious communities.
The Finnish Buddhist Union’s mission is to promote and uphold Buddhist values and practices while working towards interfaith cooperation and tolerance. SBU serves as the representative of Buddhist communities at both national and international levels. It aims to raise awareness of Buddhism in Finland and enhance the conditions for practicing Buddhism. Finland is home to around 50 different Buddhist groups and over 15,000 practitioners. SBU has 13 member communities, with the largest being the Thai and Vietnamese Buddhist communities.
The Finnish Hindu Forum is a national umbrella organization for Finnish Hindu communities. Member organizations of the Finnish Hindu Forum include the ISKCON Finland, Sri Caitanya Sangha, and the Pujari Association of Finland. The Hindu Forum promotes awareness of Hindu culture in Finland and serves as a common discussion forum and think tank for Hindu communities. The Hindu population in Finland is rapidly growing, with the number expected to double by 2030.