Kuala Lumpur: Twenty-four influential peace practitioners of the KAICIID International Fellows Programme from all over the world representing six of the world’s religions will convene in Kuala Lumpur from 3 to 8 April 2017 for advanced dialogue training and to design interreligious dialogue projects to promote social cohesion in their own communities.
Each KAICIID ‘Fellow’ has his or her own unique stories of dialogue and brings together diverse communities to inspire them to live together with respect. For example, Fellow Alissa Wahid is recognised for her work in multiculturalism, democracy and human rights in Indonesia and is National Director of the Gusdurian Network, Indonesia. Sri Swami Svatmananda is a Hindu monk whose experience of growing up on four different continents and among multiple religious traditions has led him to connect with people from all backgrounds, and he conducts courses and workshops all over the world. Dr. Simran Jeet Singh is a university professor, a Fellow for the Sikh Coalition, a Truman National Security Fellow for the Truman National Security Project, and a Handa Fellow for Interreligious Communication and promotes peace and social cohesion by counteracting discrimination and xenophobia through dialogue in the United States. Nor Asiah Madale Adilao has undertaken leading roles in forming a culture of dialogue, organizing IRD activities, and educating youth in the Philippines. She was a recipient of the 2007 Ten Most Outstanding Muslim Youth in the Philippines, and served as Davao City Youth Ambassador in 2005.
During their gathering in Kuala Lumpur, the Fellows will also visit local houses of worship such as mosques, churches and temples so that they can interact and dialogue with religious leaders and congregations. For some of the Fellows, this will be their first time visiting the houses of worship of other religions and have a firsthand experience of the extensive diversity in Kuala Lumpur.
Following this training, the Fellows will implement their projects to promote mutual understanding and social cohesion in their own ethnically and religiously diverse communities. Previous projects have included community dialogues, study trips for students, research, writing and distributing interreligious dialogue manuals and even publishing a dialogue game app. At the conclusion of the one-year programme, the Fellows will visit KAICIID in Vienna to finalise their training and evaluate their dialogue projects before graduating and being inducted into the KAICIID International Fellows Network.
The KAICIID Fellows Programme
The KAICIID International Fellows Programme is a one-year learning and training programme that will empower institutions that train future religious leaders by providing capacity-building to select teachers and dialogue practitioners. The aim is to facilitate dialogue encounters by giving these teachers the tools, experience, networks and knowledge to pursue interreligious dialogue and further be able to prepare their own students and community members to become facilitators and leaders in interreligious dialogue. In addition to interreligious dialogue training, the Fellows will also learn how to train their own students in conflict transformation so as to be active peacemakers in their respective communities.
The Fellows Network
After graduating from the programme, the Fellows will join the KAICIID International Fellows Network, a network of more than 100 Fellows from more than 30 countries representing 8 world religions. These Fellows have reached nearly 3,600 people worldwide through 60 initiatives, and continue to work in promoting dialogue and social cohesion globally at the community level.
For more information, visit kaiciid.org/fellows.