India Cultural Centre of Canada (ICCC) Gurdwara Nanak Niwas, 8600 #5 Road in Richmond, BC was honoured to host eleven United Nations Ambassadors on Monday, November 13. These diplomats represented Finland, Ghana, Guatemala, Jordan, Mali, Mauritania, Peru, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Vietnam and Canada. The UN Ambassadors happened to be in Vancouver for a Peacekeeping Defense Ministers’ Summit. While in Vancouver they expressed a desire to meet the Gurdwara Management and members of the Highway to Heaven Association. Richmond’s Highway to Heaven is home to more than 20 places of worship representing different faiths including Sikhism, Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism and many others. The discussion took place in a very friendly, relaxing and cordial environment.
The outstanding feature of this event was when two educators-Sukaina Jaffer, Vice Principal of the Az-Zahraa Islamic Academy and Lisa Romalis, Vice Principal of Richmond Jewish Day School, stood up together and spoke about their student’s common activities. This presentation was very much appreciated by everyone. The UN Ambassadors led by His Excellency Marc-Andre Blanchard, Ambassador of Canada to the United Nations, were keen to learn about the religious diversity and our concerted efforts in promoting harmony and unity in diversity on this small stretch of #5 Road in Richmond. They were very impressed with the concept of this multi-faith association where people from different ethnic and religious groups have come together to practice their faith and live in harmony.
The UN Ambassadors commended members of the Highway to Heaven Association and Gurdwara Management for these wonderful initiatives. There was a very productive exchange between them, hosts and invited guests. On behalf of ICCC Chairman Asa Singh Johal, Balwant Sanghera, a member of the Gurdwara Management Committee and Chairperson of the Highway to Heaven Association, thanked the Ambassadors for taking the time to visit us.