The Human Life Centre, Bhubaneswar, was started in January 1981 by Rev Fr William Petrie, sscc, an American priest of the congregation of the Sacred Heart. The best way to describe it and the concept behind it is, “To promote Personal, Inter Personal and Community Growth.” This is the purpose of any activity at this centre. It is a collaborative effort which brings together local communities, irrespective of caste or creed; all groups to participate in the activities and can even join in its administration through the governing body.
It began small. A Reading room and a small library were opened in a rented house at 20 Satyanagar. In 1983, it was moved to 1 Satyanagar, by the side of the main Janpath Road it remained until 1st November 1987, when it was shifted to the new building constructed on the North West corner of the St Joseph’s School campus, becoming an educational extension of St Joseph School.
When Jesuits decided to associate themselves with the Human Life Centre (HLC), Fr Petrie continued to be the Director. Fr John Guidera assisted him as the Administrator for some time. When Fr Gautam Choudhury from Calcutta joined HLC staff, he was designated as the Co-ordinator of Academics. Mr Julian Boyle was involved in the HLC work from April 1981 was responsible for the Spoken English Courses, which were very popular among College students. Fr Gautam was working with him for two years and also gave courses in public speaking and leadership. Besides the regular Spoken English classes, Julian was giving a series of classes to the staff of CARE. Initially the spoken English classes were held at St Joseph’s school building.
In February 1987, Fr Michael Bogaert took over from Fr Gautham as the Co-ordinator of Academics and started a course on “How to give an interview”. Later on 31 August 1987, Fr Ed McGrath of XLRI fame, succeeded Fr Bogaert. With the generous support of Fr John Guidera and Mr A. G McCarthy of Loyola Foundation, a new three story building was constructed and on 1 November, 1987 , HLC was shifted to the new building which we have at present.