The British Chapter of the International Association for Religious Freedom (IARF) will host a special open online meeting at 2pm UK time on Monday 5 July 2021.
Don De Silva, Former Senior Official at UN Environment Programme, University Buddhist Chaplain and Council Member of the Faith Forum for London, will talk on the topic of “Beyond Religion: Faith, Environment and Justice” followed by a Q&A.
The meeting will be held on Zoom. You can join here.
About the speaker
Don de Silva is an environmentalist, journalist, author, life coach, Buddhist Chaplain, and trainer. He worked as a Senior Official with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). He has implemented global effective campaigns to promote sustainability and climate change issues and has participated in creating new forms of environmental diplomacy.
He was part of a team at the UNEP Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, which facilitated the creation of the South Asian Co-operative Environment Programme (SACEP), the first-ever inter-governmental body in the region.
In the late 1980s, he worked at the London-based International Institute for Environment and Development’s Earthscan programme, where he led a programme to train environmental NGOs in developing countries in advocacy, media and campaigning.
In the UK, he also worked with business ventures to help those from disadvantaged communities to establish small and medium-sized businesses.
A mindfulness trainer, he focusses on the Buddhist foundations of mindfulness, particularly its relevance to sustainable living. At universities, he delivers sessions on areas, such as mindfulness and confidence building, reducing stress and anxiety, mindful learning and speaking.
He combines his skills in creating, managing and implementing value-based solutions to critical issues, through trust-building, conflict resolution, mindfulness and transformational change. He is firmly committed to the Buddhist emphasis that that societal change has to start with oneself.
In the UK, he has created a national network, which enables faith-based community organisations to work together, share experiences, launch joint initiatives, sustain common action to counter disintegration. He firmly believes that we need to think beyond faith, religion and beliefs to tackle issues like climate change.
Currently, he also lectures regularly on issues, such as: COVID-19 and Climate Change; Buddhism, Environment, Advocacy and Change; and Buddhism and Governance.