The UNESCO/Madanjeet Chair on promoting tolerance and non-violence in Chile and Latin America through education, established at the Metropolitan University of Educational Sciences in Santiago de Chile (Chile), was inaugurated at a ceremony on 3 October 2017, in the presence of France Marquet, Principal Trustee of the Madanjeet Singh Foundation.
The Chair aims to promote the values of the UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence, to contribute to fostering a culture of inclusion, rights and citizenship, and to strengthen the values of tolerance and non-violence at universities and higher education institutions, including teacher training institutions, in Chile and Latin America.
The Chairholder, Professor Francisco Javier Estévez Valencia, is the co-laureate of the 2014 edition of the Prize. Historian and the Executive Director of the Museum of Human Rights and Memory in Chile, he started his non-violent struggle for human rights and democracy during the years of the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet and became one of the well-known leaders of the democratic resistance of young Chileans. As coordinator of the Cinta Amarilla citizen campaign, he contributed to the abolition of the death penalty in Chile in 2001, and to the removal from the public space of monuments symbolizing the military regime.
France Marquet and Francisco Javier Estévez Valencia met with Michelle Bachelet Jeria, President of Chile, on 6 October 2017 and visited the Ministry of Education and the UNESCO National Commission for Chile.
The UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence was established in 1995 on the occasion of the United Nations Year for Tolerance and the 125th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi. It is awarded every two years to individuals or institutions for their outstanding contribution to the promotion of tolerance and non-violence and aims to advance the spirit of tolerance in the arts, education, culture, science and communication.