By Tenzin Dharpo
CTA Prez Dr. Lobsang Sangay at the opening function of the forum held at Fortune Moksh Hotel in Dharamshala on Sep. 13, 2018. Phayul Photo- Kunsang Gashon
DHARAMSHALA, Sep. 14: The third and the final forum of the Central Tibetan Administration’s ‘Five and Fifty’ initiative saw over 200 experts on varied fields including leadership, resource mobilisation, health, education as well as funding partners and senior officials of Central Tibetan Administration converge here at Dharamshala, the seat of the exile Tibetan community to promote in essence, the resilience in the Tibetan diaspora, on Thursday evening.
The four-day ‘Five Fifty Forum: Towards a Resilient Tibetan Community’ follows similar forums; ‘Shaping Tibet’s Political Future’ and the ‘Youth Forum’ under the banner of the incumbent Tibetan President Dr. Lobsang Sangay’s flagship ‘Five and Fifty’ vision.
Kaydor Aukatsang, CTA Resilience Officer and Director of SARD, said that CTA’s Five Fifty vision ultimately calls for maximising efforts to resolve the Tibet issue but the leadership has an added responsibility in view of the critical development inside Tibet and exile, and to address resiliency challenges and opportunities and new ideas.
The deliberations that will be participated and led by experts in various fields from within the diaspora and outside, will touch upon four key topics which are; Sustaining Tibetan Culture; Economic Development of Tibetan Community; Strengthening Tibetan Education; and A Healthier Tibetan Community.
The Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama lauding the initiative wrote, “It is important not to be complacent, content merely with what we’ve become used to. We should move with the times, keeping with the way the world is changing. This may involve new ways to thinking and setting a clear vision for the future.”
The forum in progress at at Fortune Moksh Hotel in Dharamshala on Sep. 13, 2018. Phayul Photo- Kunsang Gashon
Key funding partners, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)’s Deputy Assistant Administrator for Asia, Ann Marie Yastishock, in her key note address, said that her office is “committed to supporting development decisions that continue to move you forward on your continued journey on self reliance and help achieve the objectives of the Five Fifty Vision.”
“One of the tangible examples on how the Tibetan community has accelerated its self reliance is the establishment of the new local financial institution and non banking financial company that addresses the critical need of Tibetan enterprises for startup and expand capital, thus boosting household and community wealth,” she added.
Minister for Finance, Karma Yeshi, said that comprehensive discussion and review among organisers and moderators spanning half a year were conducted to produce the background report and tailored themes, which will be discussed in the course of the next four days.
The broad 5/50 initiative calls for a revitalization of the Tibetan people’s struggle to seek genuine autonomy through the ‘Middle Way Approach’ in the next five years while strategizing to embolden and sustain the Tibetan movement over the next fifty years as a contingency plan.