This April, the UWC Dilijan school welcomed Aurora Prize Selection Committee Co-Chair George Clooney to tour and meet with students. During a student-led Q&A, Mr. Clooney spoke about the importance of education, the next generation's ability to positively impact the world, and the need for people of different cultures to learn from each other through positive discourse.
We couldn't agree more. With so much conflict being endured the world over, it's never been more important to foster a sense of humanity within the next generation by engaging people with diverse backgrounds and beliefs at a young age. In fact, it was with this shared belief in the power of cross-cultural dialogue that Veronika and I helped co-found UWC Dilijan in 2014.
Part of a global network of international schools, UWC Dilijan brings together 190 students from 64 countries, challenging their preconceived notions of other nationalities. Turkish students learning alongside Armenians, Israeli students being educated with Palestinians. Many students themselves come from conflict areas; some have even lost loved ones as a result. At UWC Dilijan, each learns to live and grow alongside another. We're excited to see them carry these lessons forward after graduating.
It was a pleasure to offer these students the chance to hear Mr. Clooney's inspiring message of tolerance, agency and peace. Our work at UWC Dilijan and beyond continues in this spirit, working to promote international dialogue and unearth the common humanity that unites us all.
One such initiative is the Aurora Prize, the annual humanitarian award Mr. Clooney presented in April which, now in its second year, recently reopened its call for nominations. The Aurora Prize aims to recognize those who have overcome great personal challenges to make an exceptional impact on preserving human life and advancing humanitarian causes.
Nominations for the 2017 Aurora Prize--which will honor one Laureate with a $100,000 grant, as well as a $1,000,000 award to be donated to the charitable organizations that inspired their work--will be accepted from now until September 9, 2016.
We encourage you to nominate by visiting the Prize website here.
This post is part of a series produced by The Huffington Post and the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity, a new global humanitarian award which was presented during a weekend of events in Armenia April 22-24. The series aims to recognize the exceptional impact the Prize finalists' actions have had on advancing humanitarian causes, and raise awareness of the weekend's humanitarian discussions, the Aurora Dialogues. For more information, visit www.auroraprize.com.