PROSPERITY IS RETURNING TO NEPAL
The Prosperity for Nepal Award contest engages Nepalese youth while teaching them the precepts of The Way to Happiness.
Nestled in the Himalayas, Nepal is a land of ancient culture and spirituality. Eight of the world’s highest mountains, including its tallest—Mount Everest—touch the sky from Nepal, which is flanked by China and India. It is home to Lumbini, the birthplace of Gautama Buddha, founder of Buddhism.
Yet, despite its rich heritage, Nepal today is one of the world’s poorest nations, suffering from declining moral values due to an inadequate education system and unemployment—both harbingers of a bleak future for its people.
Rocco Lanatà, a Way to Happiness advocate, first came to Nepal at the invitation of Mahesh Kunwar, former Nepal Undersecretary of Education and President of the Humanitarian Society of Nepal. Kunwar was looking for solutions to better his homeland, and after seeing a TWTH event online that Lanatà held, he knew he had found a perfect partner in his plans to change the face of Nepal.
The two agreed to collaborate, and at the end of 2013 began a project to train the military after the Commanding General of the Armed Police Forces had reviewed The Way to Happiness and simply said, “I want this.” Seminars were also held for doctors, nurses and Buddhist monks in Lumbini.
But to change Nepal’s future, they needed to reach the youth. To that end, meetings were held in 2016 with the Minister of Urban Development, the General of the Nepal Armed Forces and the President of the Private and Boarding Schools’ Organization of Nepal. This inspired plans that would help realize the dream of a stronger, more prosperous Nepal by providing youth the guiding moral principles of The Way to Happiness.
As expressed by the Minister of Urban Development, “From the deep of my heart I warmly recommend for the greater benefit of Nepali People, to adopt The Way to Happiness, whose large distribution would pursue the peace, the safety and prosperity for our beautiful nation.”
So was born the Prosperity for Nepal Award to be implemented in the 2017 to 2018 school year. “A contest for schools across Nepal will be based on the application of a precept of The Way to Happiness,” explained Lanatà.
“From the deep of my heart I warmly recommend for the greater benefit of Nepali People, to adopt The Way to Happiness, whose large distribution would pursue the peace, the safety and prosperity for our beautiful nation.”
Lanatà and Kunwar introduced the contest with two training sessions for 346 teachers and principals, who then returned to their schools with TWTH booklets in hand to train yet more teachers. Following the training, delivery started immediately with students choosing one precept of The Way to Happiness and creating projects to demonstrate its application in life. Older students chose precept 4, “Love and Help Children.” In demonstration of that, they paired up with the school’s youngest students, and helped them with their schoolwork. The students of the Shikshalaya Nepal School applied precept 16, “Be Industrious,” by cleaning up their school’s courtyard which was in disorder from an abandoned construction project. They made it clean, orderly and usable again.
At the end of 2018, each school principal will prepare a DVD containing evidence of their activities in implementing the chosen precept of TWTH. It will include a short report, success stories, photos and videos.
Three winners will be chosen, but in fact all participants will be winners, because in the process of the contest, the youth of Nepal will be instilled with essential moral values in a fun and engaging way. A stronger moral fabric will become the foundation for the future: a flourishing and thriving Nepal.
HELP RESTORE TRUST
The Way to Happiness Foundation International works to reverse the moral decay of society by restoring trust and honesty through widespread distribution of the 21 precepts. Donations support production and distribution of The Way to Happiness booklet and curriculum material.