The Peace Education Program (PEP) is being warmly received in the small tropical island nation of Mauritius, which lies 1,200 miles off the southeast coast of Africa. The innovative course became available after Maoomar Hoota, a 21-year-old engineering student, took the initiative to bring it to the Atlantis Business School in the town of Vacoas.
Maoomar first became aware of PEP by reading about it on The Prem Rawat Foundation website. He shared information about PEP with Mr. Pritesh Bissoonauth, the manager of the school, and they were both impressed with how it seemed to be changing lives around the world. “We just want to see PEP have the same impact here, improving the lives of people and bringing the possibility of peace in their lives,” says Maoomar.
The inaugural PEP at the school had 17 participants—a mix of students and NGO officials. Dozens more are now enrolled in a second round of PEP that is happening at the school, and a third will begin soon. Comments from participants during the workshops show that PEP is helping many of them discover a sense of inner hope and cultivating a new approach to thinking about peace.
“I think we can bring a change in this world, and it has to begin with each and every one of us. Peace starts with me,” said one participant.
“Peace is a feeling, an experience, a seed which has to be cultivated over time,” said another.
“We should be like flowers and bloom like them,” another added.
Maoomar and a team of 15 Mauritian volunteers are very encouraged by the positive responses and are already receiving requests from other NGOs to offer PEP at different locations, including a prison.
“Hopefully, we can offer PEP throughout all of Mauritius so everyone can benefit,” says Maoomar.