A Banner Year for Prem Rawat’s Message of Peace
US-Newswire press release
Los Angeles, California, January 6, 2006 — 2005 was a banner year, as millions of people around the world came to hear Prem Rawat deliver his message of peace and hope. Known worldwide by the honorary title Maharaji, Prem Rawat spoke to audiences in packed halls from Mumbai, India, to Melbourne, Australia; from Lisbon, Portugal, to Colombo, Sri Lanka, to Durban, South Africa.
His international audiences varied from distinguished government and civic leaders to villagers in remote areas. In India alone, more than 1.7 million people listened to him speak.
In 2005, among other notable events, he spoke at the Parliament House in Canberra, Australia, at the occasion of the UN International Day of Peace. The UN 60th Anniversary Committee invited him to deliver the keynote address at their celebration in San Francisco, California, in the Herbst Theater, where the UN charter was signed. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom proclaimed June 16th “Prem Rawat Day.”
In 2005, his travels took him from the US to India and Sri Lanka, to Europe, and to the Pacific. In April, he addressed government and civic leaders at the invitation of the UN Association of Malaysia. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan sent his best wishes for the event. The following week, he addressed government leaders, faculty, and students at Thailand’s leading university, Thammasat. In May, he spoke at events in Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, and Tainan before traveling to Italy where he addressed thousands of people in Livorno.
In June, he came to Miami at the invitation of Eduardo Padrón, President of Miami Dade College, the largest institution of higher education in the United States. He first spoke at a small event attended by leaders of the Miami community and, the next day, at a large benefit for the UN World Food Programme.
After delivering the keynote address at the United Nations’ 60th Anniversary in San Francisco, he attended events in Miami Beach, London, and Lisbon. He later addressed a distinguished audience of faculty, students, and guests at Oxford University. By August, he was addressing an audience in Knoxville, Tennessee, and in September, attended events in Australia. Following that, he addressed audiences in Mauritius and South Africa.
In November, nearly a half million people in India had the opportunity to hear him, as he toured many rural towns and villages for the first time. Following that, more than 70,000 people from 45 countries attended an event on the outskirts of Delhi.
It was a year of reaching out to those in need, as The Prem Rawat Foundation generously responded to some of the worst international disasters in history—including the tsunami in Southeast Asia. Contributions from thousands of individuals poured in to support the humanitarian initiatives. In January, the Foundation held a benefit event, where items gifted by Prem Rawat were auctioned, generating more than US$700,000. All proceeds were donated to The Prem Rawat Foundation to help support its ongoing activities. In February, at a ceremony hosted at the Italian Senate by Emilio Colombo, former President of the European Parliament, Prem Rawat donated US$150,000 on behalf of TPRF to the United Nations World Food Programme for food aid in Indonesia.
In March, Prem Rawat laid the cornerstone of a facility in northeastern India that will serve hundreds of free meals daily to schoolchildren and people most in need. In June, at a benefit in Miami, he donated US$30,000 on behalf of the Foundation to the School Feeding Programme of the World Food Programme. In August, a few days after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Cost of the US, TPRF sent US$110,000 to the Houston Food Bank to help bring food to hurricane victims. That same week, the Foundation sent US$30,000 to the World Food Programme for food aid to victims of famine in Niger, West Africa. Shortly thereafter, the Foundation gave US$100,000 to the World Food Programme for food aid to victims of the earthquake in Pakistan. In November, TPRF hosted a free medical clinic in India, where thousands received medical consultations and prescription glasses.
Prem Rawat has received accolades and awards internationally. His message is broadcast throughout the world. Though many have praised his work, perhaps his efforts are best summed up by Paul McDonald, the Executive Director for the Committee for Economic Development of Australia, who introduced him on the UN International Day of Peace at Australia’s Parliament House:
“It’s not possible in a few words to convey the breadth of Prem Rawat’s achievements. Or, indeed, what he has to offer in the context of peace. He travels the world inspiring people to find peace within. His purpose has always been the same: to help each person find fulfillment.
“In the troubled times in which we are living, our dream for peace seems to elude us. While we tend to first look to institutions to bring peace, Prem Rawat says we need first and foremost to look within. Peace, he says, is possible. It is within each person waiting, wanting to be felt. His message is original and profound.”
The Prem Rawat Foundation promotes Prem Rawat’s message of peace and spearheads significant humanitarian initiatives around the world.