Press Release - 2-17-2012 - His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Visit Oahu April 14-16

His Holiness the Dalai Lama
to Visit Oahu April 14-16

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Cultural exchange and public presentations to focus on themes of compassion, peace, diversity and Hawaiian culture

HONOLULU – February 17, 2012 – The Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF) today announced that it will sponsor two public talks in Honolulu featuring Tenzin Gyatso, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet, April 14th and 15th, 2012. The talks are part of the Dalai Lama's three-day stay on Oahu (April 14-16), where he will participate in a series of conversations with local leaders and visits to important cultural and historical sites. The Dalai Lama is visiting Oahu at the invitation of Pierre and Pam Omidyar. Support is being provided by a lead grant from the Omidyar Ohana Fund in addition to other partners providing in-kind and cash donations.

The Dalai Lama’s visit marks the launch of a new HCF initiative entitled “Pillars of Peace Hawaii: Building Peace on a Foundation of Aloha.” The program aims to bring global peace leaders to Hawaii to exchange ideas about the many forms of peace that exist here at home in Hawaii, and around the world.

“The people of Hawaii, their welcoming ‘spirit of aloha’ and the blending of many cultures are facets that make our islands a special place to live,” said Kelvin Taketa, President and CEO of the Hawaii Community Foundation. “We take pride in our ability to embrace our diversity and peacefully co-exist, and are honored to be able to share this valuable lesson with others around the world. Through the Pillars of Peace program, we hope to share these examples with global peace leaders such as the Dalai Lama, while also absorbing the wisdom they have to share from their own cultures and experiences.”

The visits from global leaders are designed to spark dialogue about the roles of compassion, diversity, and culture as key components for practicing peace.

“Peace is an active state of being—it is not passive,” said Pierre Omidyar. “We hope that the Dalai Lama’s visit will inspire people to consciously embrace compassion and apply peace in their everyday lives.”

The Dalai Lama will speak at two public events during his visit to Oahu; both will take place at the Stan Sheriff Center on the University of Hawaii campus at Manoa. The first event, for high school and college students titled, “Educating the Heart,” will be held on April 14th at 1:30 p.m. HAST. More than half of the tickets for this student talk are free and being distributed through public and private high schools on Oahu.

The second event, intended for the general public, “Advancing Peace through the Power of Aloha,” will take place on April 15th at 1:45 p.m. HAST.  

Tickets for both events can be purchased online starting February 22nd at 6:00 p.m. HAST. Beginning February 23rd, tickets will also be sold at the University of Hawaii Stan Sheriff Center box office. Additional ticket and event information is available at www.pillarsofpeacehawaii.org.

For those unable to attend in person, both events will be available for playback after the events conclude on the Pillars of Peace Hawaii website.  

Pillars of Peace is also on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pillarsofpeace and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PillarsofPeace for up-to-date information.

About His Holiness the Dalai Lama

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is a man of peace.  In 1989 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent struggle for the liberation of Tibet.  He has consistently advocated policies of non-violence, even in the face of extreme aggression. He also became the first Nobel Laureate to be recognized for his concern for global environmental problems. His Holiness has travelled to more than 62 countries spanning 6 continents.  He has met with presidents, prime ministers and crowned rulers of major nations.  He has held dialogues with the heads of different religions and many well-known scientists. Since 1959 His Holiness has received over 84 awards, honorary doctorates, prizes, etc., in recognition of his message of peace, non-violence, inter-religious understanding, universal responsibility and compassion.  His Holiness has also authored more than 72 books. His Holiness describes himself as a simple Buddhist monk. For more information about the Dalai Lama, please visit: www.dalailama.com

About the Hawaii Community Foundation

With 95 years of community service, the Hawaii Community Foundation is the leading philanthropic institution in the state. The Foundation is a steward of more than 600 funds, including more than 160 scholarship funds, created by donors who desire to transform lives and improve communities. In 2011, more than $43 million in grants and contracts were distributed statewide. The Foundation also serves as a resource on community issues and trends in the nonprofit sector.  Visit www.hawaiicommunityfoundation.org for more information.

About Pierre and Pam Omidyar

Active philanthropists who are guided by their belief that people are inherently capable and basically good, Pierre and Pam Omidyar have committed more than $1 billion to help individuals improve their lives and ignite change across a variety of sectors and geographies. The Omidyars received the 2011 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy in recognition of the lasting impact of their work and generosity. In 2009, Pierre and Pam made an historic $50 million commitment to the Hawai‘i Community Foundation to establish the Omidyar Ohana Fund, which is being used to launch several community initiatives. To learn more about the Omidyars’ commitment to Hawai’i and ongoing philanthropic interests around the world, go to www.pillarsofpeacehawaii.org/hosts.