A Peaceful Toast For The Universal Peace Federation
In celebration of the United Nations International Day of Families 2015, the Universal peace federation, along with the Washington Times, played host to the event held last June 4 at the Washington Times office. More than 70 leaders and members covering the non-governmental sector, the diplomatic corps, and friends of the UPF attended the event.
Invited speakers focused on the importance of the family in line with the theme of the celebration this year, which was “Men In Charge? Gender Equality and Children’s Rights in Contemporary Families”. Mrs. Tomiko Duggan, the Universal peace federation international office public affairs director, emphasized this when she noted that as a global organization, the UPF firmly believes that the family is the most important societal unit.
For his part, Dr. Neil Parsan, Trinidad and Tobago ambassador to Mexico, the United States, and the OAS or the Organization of American States, initially thanked the UPF for promoting global peace by sponsoring the event and for its continuing work on helping to strengthen family bonds.
A doctor by profession, Ambassador Parsan noted that the present family structure is undergoing major changes. For example, getting to nurture children is no longer an exclusive duty of the mothers. In New York, the ambassador spoke of training programs being offered to fathers who might be interested in learning proper care giving. The program has gained wide acceptance and is currently expanding to several states.
In this regard, Ambassador Parsan stressed that while genuine gender equality needs to be pushed, it does not necessarily mean a complete switch of the traditional roles of men and women in the family. Instead, support should be extended based on what every unique family actually needs.
Another speaker, Farhod Salim, Tajikistan Ambassador to the US, said that while his country is technically young, its rich culture has high respects for the family as ths is considered sacred. Personally, he believes that the family is the source of happiness.
Presently, Ambassador Salim revealed that his government is taking several measures aimed at improving the status of women. This has resulted in more women assuming leadership positions in both the local and national levels.
Meanwhile, Mrs. Phindile Ntshangase, wife of the Kingdom of Swaziland Ambassador to the US, spoke about the plight of many African women. In her speech, Mrs Ntshangase condemned reports about young African women being brought to local sex camps where they are being taught to become sex experts in preparation for marriage.
On the other hand, Universal peace federation secretary-general Ricardo de la Serna, observed that the family is a sacred institution in practically all religions. This makes the family holy, and that the ultimate plan of the Almighty is for man to live in happiness in a God-centered family.
He ended his speech with an invitation for people to share in the basic belief of the Universal peace federation that educating the family will help shape the destiny of a country.