What is Universal Education?


I believe that at every level of society, the key to a happier and more successful world is the growth of compassion. We do not need to become religious, nor do we need to believe in an ideology. All that is necessary is for each of us to develop our good human qualities.

                                                  -The Dalai Lama (Patron of Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom)


What is Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom?

The aim of Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom is to empower children, youth and adults to make a positive difference in the world through developing their innate capacity to be kind and wise, and to live in a way that will bring peace and well being to themselves and the people around them.

This is the essential education traditionally passed down from elder to child, teacher to pupil, and in places of worship. In a world beset by economic downturn, a severely damaged natural environment, ethnic conflict and religious fundamentalism, it is needed more than ever – especially in a fresh, contemporary and universal form that will inspire and draw people together rather than divide them.

Universal Education for Compassion and Wisdom is a UK-based NGO established in 2005 under the title “The Foundation for Developing Compassion and Wisdom.” Its patron is His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

What is Special About UECW?


Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom is

universal:  suitable for people of all ages and cultures, and of any faith or none

practical:  immediately applicable to everyday life, from birth up until death

appreciative:  celebrating the unique potential of every individual

non-dogmatic:  encouraging robust enquiry and personal relection

integrated:  promoting learning methods that bring together both head and heart

multidisciplinary:  encouraging the use of drama, literature, art and film


Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom’s content and methodology are rooted in Buddhist philosophy and psychology fused with up-to-date findings from the natural and social sciences, and with complementary material from other wisdom and spiritual traditions. There is a particular emphasis on promoting positive role models, based on inspiring true stories from around the world.


How Does Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom Work?

Essential Education works to create a more peaceful world by providing resources, training and connections that enable people to set up Essential Education programmes in their own community: in schools, hospitals and hospices, prisons, the workplace and the home.

Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom works closely with initiatives and programmes that share its outlook and methodology, such as Transformative Mindfulness, Loving Kindness Peaceful Youth and Creating Compassionate Cultures.


Who Makes Universal Education for Compassion & Wisdom Happen?

Two full-time workers in the London office are supplemented by a team of trainers and volunteers around the world. Start-up funding has been provided by a Millennium Award from UnLtd, the company Terrapinn, the Tudor Trust and by personal donation.