Thursday, November 16, 2006

GUIDED DIVERSITY TOUR

The best way to teach diversity is to experience it live by visiting a cultural place and seeing, listening and soaking the way in which different people live and work. This is the press release for my latest project, which appeared in the Colchester Gazette.

Culture begins at home – and here in the UK is a world of cultures for which we are very fortunate. Colchester-based resident and Diversity expert Dr. Atul Shah took a tour of senior Essex executives to understand and experience different cultures first hand. Mr. Martin Rayson, Head of Strategic Human Resources at Essex County Council and Ms. Joanne Kett from Braintree District Council and member of East of England Diversity Network visited the world famous £10million Swaminarayan Hindu Mandir in Neasden in London and the newly built £5million Jain temple in Potters Bar, North London. As India becomes a leading world nation, and as trade increases, the understanding of its culture becomes more and more relevant. There are over 2 million Indian-origin people in Britain today, 3% of whom live in Essex and contribute significantly to the local economy.

Speaking about the tour, Mr. Rayson commented: “The tour has given me a great insight into Hinduism and its communities. What I saw and experienced was the power and joy of different communities coming together to share experiences.” Ms. Kett added: “I have attended many courses on Diversity, but to see it live and experience it is a unique memorable experience. I enjoyed the hospitality and feel that when communities are so well organised, they do not become a burden on the state and instead add value to Britain.”

“There is a huge attention given to faith and intolerance in the media today. I am keen to build bridges and encourage businesses and public organisations to experience the beauty of diversity first hand. This is a practical way of making a real difference to people’s lives and understanding,” said tour organiser Dr. Atul Shah of www.diverseethics.com

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