Estonian Society of Sydney

  • Introduction
  • History
  • Board of Directors
  • Membership
  • Annual General Meetings
  • Contact

The Estonian Society of Sydney (Sydney Eesti Selts “Eesti Kodu Linda”) was established on 9 October 1927. It operates as a non-profit cultural organisation, independent of religion or party politics. Its objectives are to aid people of Estonian background, primarily in NSW, in the maintenance and promotion of Estonian culture, language and traditions. It also promotes Estonian culture within the broader Australian community.

Sydney Estonian House was built in 1940 as an initiative of the Estonian Society of Sydney, to provide the Estonian Society of Sydney with its own home for organising cultural, educational and social events and activities. It was the first Estonian house built by an Estonian community outside Estonia.

The Estonian Society of Sydney manages usage of the facilities and amenities of Sydney Estonian House, organises concerts, ceremonies, plays and social gatherings, and provides sponsorship and support for activities including music, folk dancing, arts and crafts, language classes, children’s and veterans’ group meetings.

The Estonian Society of Sydney also publishes a newspaper “Meie Kodu” (Our Home) for circulation to subscribers and houses the Estonian Archives in Australia within Sydney Estonian House.

The Estonian Society of Sydney (Sydney Eesti Selts “Eesti Kodu Linda”) was established on 9 October 1927, to provide cultural, educational and social events and activities for the local Estonian community. The Estonian Society of Sydney initially operated in rented rooms within the Sydney CBD and surrounds. It commenced fund-raising for building of Sydney Estonian House in 1937, paid a deposit for purchase of the land at 141 Campbell Street and 22 Goodchap Street in March 1938, then created The Estonian House Co-operative Society of Sydney Limited as the legal entity by which the Estonian Society of Sydney could build the property that is its home. The Co-operative was registered on 8 April 1938.

The Foundation Stone of Sydney Estonian House was laid on 13 April 1940. The Estonian Society of Sydney acquired the right and responsibility to occupy and manage the usage of Estonian House in 17 August 1940, when the keys to Sydney Estonian House were ceremoniously handed over from the Co-operative to the Estonian Society of Sydney at the official opening of the house.

Enlargement of the premises was undertaken to meet the needs of the Estonian Society of Sydney. With the consent of the Board of the Co-operative, in July 1946 the Estonian Society paid out the purchase price and expenses for the adjoining properties at 143 Campbell Street and 24-26 Goodchap Street, which were bought in the name of the Co-operative. The Estonian Society of Sydney was issued with shares to the value of the purchase price and expenses. To raise funds for the building, new members were recruited to the Co-operative, with the bulk of recruitment and exaction of installment payments from members of the Estonian Society being done by members of the Board of the Estonian Society of Sydney.

The Foundation Stone for extension of the premises as laid on 24 August 1957 and the extension was opened on 6 April 1958.

On 14 October 1993, the Estonian Society of Sydney and the Council of Estonian Societies in Australia (Austraalia Eesti Seltside Liit, AESL) signed an agreement for the Estonian Archives in Australia to relocate to Sydney Estonian House. Necessary internal structural alterations were undertaken to accommodate the Archives.

The Estonian Society of Sydney has managed the facilities and usage of Sydney Estonian House since 1940, and continues to undertake renovation, refurbishment and rejuvenation of the house as needed by the community and users.

Board of Directors

Madis Alvre – President

Juhan Lübek – Vice President

Aet Madison – Secretary

Tiina Alvre – Treasurer

Lauri Liblik

Peeter Muttik

Arne Rahnel

Tiina Tamm

Allan Taruste

The financial year of the Estonian Society of Sydney Inc corresponds to the calendar year (1 January to 31 December). Annual General Meetings are held in March of the following year. If you wish to nominate for membership of the Board, please see sydneyeestiselts.org.au/membership

Estonian House Address

141-143 Campbell St
Surry Hills NSW 2010

PO Box 147
Darlinghurst NSW 1300

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Phone: (02) 9212 2113

About Estonian House & Hall Hire
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