CALENDAR OF EVENTS
UPF-Nepal Launches Associations for Professors, Teachers
Written by Dr. Robert S. Kittel, director of education, UPF-Asia
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Kathmandu, Nepal—More than 500 guests attended the inauguration of two significant peacebuilding organizations in Nepal at a special celebration organized by UPF-Nepal on March 25, 2015.
The meeting, which took place at the five-star Hotel Yak & Yeti, heralded the start of Nepal chapters of the Professors World Peace Academy and the Teachers’ Association for the Research of Principles.
The event also served two other significant purposes. It celebrated the ninth anniversary of The Universal Times, a national weekly newspaper that regularly supports UPF activities.
Last but not least, the program was a “thank you” to the members of Parliament, dignitaries, principals, schoolteachers and parents who supported the Multicultural Family Educational Peace Festival 2015 and the 16th South Asia Peace Initiative (SAPI) in late February.
The audience included the current minister of education, two former university vice chancellors, 15 current members of Parliament representing 10 political parties, five officers from the government of Nepal, six security personnel (police and traffic officials), 10 religious leaders from the major traditions, 285 high school and college principals and five national-level artists.
In his speech, Dr. Chung Sik Yong, the regional president of UPF-Asia, thanked the many people who had helped to make the 16th SAPI and Family Festival successful. His list was long, as so many deserved to be honored and appreciated.
Dr. Yong also quoted from the address given by Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, the co-founder of the Universal Peace Federation, at the UPF International Leadership Conference in Seoul, Korea, at the beginning of March:
… A movement is being formed that is truly transformative. Recently in the Philippines and Nepal, UPF and the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification convened major international conferences and hosted [Interfaith Peace] Blessing ceremonies for 210,000 couples. … UPF’s South Asia Peace Initiative, which began when my husband and I visited Kathmandu to launch UPF in 2005, has played a central role in the peace process in that country.
Nepal’s minister of education, Hon. Chitralekha Yadav, originally planned to spend only 10 minutes at the program, as she was to be the chief guest at another event later that evening. However, when she entered the hall, she was amazed to see so many educators, including university vice chancellors, presidents of school associations, principals, teachers and members of Parliament (she herself is an MP).
Her heart was touched and she said to herself, “I have to stay.” She called the people who were organizing the other program—just an hour before their event—and informed them that she would not be able to come.
In her address Minister Yadav praised UPF Founders Dr. and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon, saying, “Father and Mother [Moon] came to Nepal to launch UPF in 2005. On the same day they came to Nepal, the [conflicting] political parties signed a memorandum of understanding, and only then did peace come to our country.”
Others who also addressed the audience included:
- Hon. Ek Nath Dhakal, chairman of UPF-Nepal
- Mr. Karna Bahadur Shahi, president of N. PABSAN, an organization of private schools
- UPF-Nepal Secretary General Santosh Paudel, who acted as the master of ceremonies.
- Dr. Robert Kittel, director of education, UPF-Asia
- Professor Dr. Suresh Raj Sharma, founding vice chancellor of Kathmandu University and patron of PWPA-Nepal
- Professor Dr. Madhav Prasad Sharma, former vice chancellor of Tribhuvan University and president of PWPA-Nepal
- Mr. Tuka Ram Dhakal, president of TARP-Nepal
- Professor Dr. Tulsi Prasad Pathak, outgoing PWPA representative
- Dr. Chuda Bahadur Shrestha, editor-in-chief, The Universal Times
Entertainment was provided by the well-known Nepali singer Ananda Karki.
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