With the recent COP26 climate conference in Glasgow a current hot topic of discussion, ISKCON held the Felication Ceremony for its biggest Value Education Olympiad yet. There we recognized hundreds of thousands of school children from across India and the world who studied environmental values based on the teachings of the Bhagavad-gita. The Olympiad, organized by ISKCON of Punjabi Bagh, Delhi, is presented by Govardhan Eco Village and ISKCON in collaboration with the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) under the Faith For Earth Councillor initiative. This initiative invites faith-based organizations to be part of the solution to perhaps the biggest concern of our time. And ISKCON has jumped at the opportunity to present the Gita as a viable solution to climate change, working with the support of government and environmental institutions, NGOs, corporates, and schools.
The Zoom ceremony was attended by Dr. Iyad Abumoghli, Director of the UNEP Faith For Earth Initiative; Atul Bagai, Head of India’s UNEP office; and Laxmi Narain Goel, trustee for Ekal schools; along with ISKCON leaders like GBC HH Gopal Krishna Goswami and Govardhana Ecovillage Director and Faith For Earth Councillor HG Gauranga Das. Every student will receive a participation certificate, while there are six prize winners from private / public schools who received first, second and third prizes of a laptop, Firefox brand bicycle, and Kindle. There were also fifty consolation prizes in this category, with 171 students from 57 sectors of Ekal schools receiving prizes of a school bag, water bottle and stationary.
The Value Education Olympiad was launched on July 15th, with final exams on October 17th and 31st. Thirty thousand students from 250 private, government and international schools registered online. Meanwhile 200,000 students of 20,000 different Ekal schools, which bring education to children in the remotest rural and tribal villages, were sent study materials in person, as they do not have Internet connectivity.