Tibetan Cultural Festival and Art Auction in Manhattan Benefits Refugee Students in Nepal and India

November 28 Event at The Soho Loft Includes Talk by the Venerable Lama Pema Wangdak

New York, NY, November 23, 2007 --(PR.com)-- The Palden Sakya Centers of Tibetan Buddhism offer an evening of Tibetan culture and an art auction to benefit schools and programs for refugee children in Nepal and India on Wednesday, November 28. The program begins at 6:30 p.m. at the Soho Loft (199 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor—between Spring and Broome). A donation of $25 is requested.

The evening features a taste of Tibet—through food, music, culture and art—and a talk by the Venerable Lama Pema Wangdak, director of the Vikramasila Foundation and the Palden Sakya Centers.

All receipts will benefit programs of the Vikramasila Foundation—the Pema Ts'al School of Mundgod, India, and the Pema Ts'al Monastic Institute of Pokhara, Nepal. In 1995, the Pema Ts'al hostel for Tibetan children was founded in Mundgod, South India. This location is a center that nurtures and supports the students of this Tibetan refugee community – graduates now attend medical school, among other places of higher learning. In 1999, a monastery school was founded in Kathmandu, Nepal, primarily to educate students from the Kingdom of Mustang. Since then, the monastery has relocated to Pokhara, Nepal, and the students continue to receive a traditional Tibetan monastic education, as well as learning subjects such as English, science, and math. Students are supported at both these locations, through fund raisers such as this evening's, as well as individuals who sponsor a child for $35 per month. Those interested in supporting the work of the Foundation, may visit the website www.paldensakya.org or send a donation to Vikramasila Foundation, 289 Brookside Avenue, Cresskill, New Jersey 07626.

Born in Purang in Western Tibet in 1954, Lama Pema Wandak's family escaped from Tibet in 1959 and eventually resettled in a refugee camp in Mundgod, South India. He is the only child of five in his family to have survived the escape. Lama Pema has been a monk since the age of 7 and is a student of His Holiness the Sakya Trizin and other great masters from the Sakya order of Tibetan Buddhism. A graduate of the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies in Benares, India, he received his Acharya (masters) degree from Sanskrit University in 1980. His Holiness the Sakya Trizin sent him to teach in the United States in 1982 as the first of the younger generation of Tibetan teachers in America from the Sakya School. Lama Pema is the creator of "Bur Yig"—Tibetan Braille. He has been guiding western students for over 20 years and continues to travel and teach extensively at Dharma centers around the world. His marvelous command of the English language and excelled wisdom and compassion make him an outstanding model in today's world.

Weekly teachings of Tibetan Buddhism are offered at the Palden Sakya Centers located in New York City and Cresskill, New Jersey. In addition, there are also Centers in Woodstock and Philmont, New York; Jamaica, Vermont; and Dayton, Ohio.

For further information and to register for the cultural festival and art auction, visit the website www.paldensakya.org, e-mail sangye@aol.com, or call 201-541-0007.

[Editor's Note: For further information and to schedule an interview with the Ven. Lama Pema Wangdak, e-mail sangye@aol.com or call 201-541-0007. Images are available, please e-mail sangye@aol.com for additional information.]

Contact: Ellen Sakany
Michele Sakow

Palden Sakya