Dr. Adriana Bara, the executive Director of the Canadian Centre for Ecumenism, and twenty-three other influential peace practitioners of the KAICIID International Fellows Programme from all over the world representing six of the world’s religions, convened in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia from 3 to 8 April 2017 for advanced dialogue training and to design interreligious dialogue projects to promote social cohesion in their own communities.
During their gathering in Kuala Lumpur, the Fellows also visited local houses of worship such as mosques, churches and temples so that they can interact and dialogue with religious leaders and congregations. For some of the Fellows, this was their first time visiting the houses of worship of other religions and have a firsthand experience of the extensive diversity in Kuala Lumpur.
Following this training, the Fellows will implement their projects to promote mutual understanding and social cohesion in their own ethnically and religiously diverse communities. Previous projects have included community dialogues, study trips for students, research, writing and distributing interreligious dialogue manuals and even publishing a dialogue game app. At the conclusion of the one-year programme, the Fellows will visit KAICIID in Vienna to finalise their training and evaluate their dialogue projects before being inducted into the KAICIID International Fellows Network.
KAICIID is an intergovernmental organization, based in Vienna, Austria, whose mandate is to promote the use of dialogue globally to prevent and resolve conflict, to enhance understanding and cooperation. It has a Board of Directors made up of representatives from major world religions. The funding States of KAICIID (Republic of Austria, Kingdom of Spain and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) constitute the “Council of Parties” responsible for overseeing the work of the Centre, and the Holy See (the Vatican) is a Founding Observer to the Centre.