Dr Brian Desbiens
Dr Brian Desbiens says: “… Not only the philosophical foundation, but the scale of which they’re trying to intervene, to make a difference in the world, is really quite impressive.”
” He [Fethullah Gulen] has a philosophy that many people can be teachers, but not too many can be true educators. And so he really gets it. He really understands that education is not just about learning a concept. It’s about learning values, it’s about learning to be a person. It’s drawing out of children, you know, helping them become whole in this world …”
” Reaching across boundaries, in this world that we live in, is a dangerous thing. And the Hizmet Movement’s all about reaching out, and going across boundaries. Trying to work with people of different beliefs and bringing ourselves together. And so I understand that that’s difficult, and it’s difficult to accept for some, too. But that’s all the more reason why we have to reach out. We have to continue to reach out, and I guess I’d want to, the message I’d want to send to the people in the Hizmet Movement is, continue. Continue in your beliefs, continue in your faith, continue in your activities, because you’re a force for good. …”
Dr Brian Desbiens
Dr Brian Desbiens is the current chair of the Education Quality and Accountability Office. Dr Brian Desbiens is the former president of Sir Sandford Fleming College, serving from 1988-2004, and has taught a variety of courses like developmental psychology, counselling theory and practice, and teaching methodology at various colleges and universities within Canada. Dr Brian Desbiens has also served on the Prime Minister’s National Advisory Board on Science and Technology. Dr Brian Desbiens has been awarded the prestigious Lifetime Distinguished Services Award by the Canadian Presidents Network.
Dr Brian Desbiens was president of Sir Sandford Fleming College for 16 years. Dr Brian Desbiens began his career as a faculty member and counsellor at St. Clair College and later became head of counselling and health services, dean of students, vice-president of administration and principal of the college’s Thames campus. Dr Brian Desbiens has taught at the secondary, college and university levels. Dr Brian Desbiens holds a master’s degree in guidance counselling and higher education and a doctorate in counselling psychology.
Intercultural Dialogue Institute
Intercultural Dialogue Institute is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to advance social cohesion via(through) personal interaction by promoting respect and mutual understanding among people of all cultures and faiths through dialogue and partnership. Intercultural Dialogue Institute aims to promote enduring interfaith and intercultural cooperation, tolerance and dialogue by sharing our differences and similarities in an effort to enhance civil society, to promote the development of human values, and to advance diversity and multiculturalism in the society. The Institute aims to eliminate or reduce false stereotypes, prejudices and unjustified fears through direct human communication. By this mission IDI aims to contribute to improvement of diversity, pluralism and multiculturalism throughout Canada. In this regard, IDI organizes social, educational and cultural activities such as lectures, seminars, conferences, discussion forums, luncheons, informative dinners, programs for students and youth, intercultural exchange trips, courses, outreach programs.
It was founded by Turkish Canadians inspired by the teachings and example of Fethullah Gulen. The Institute is not a religious or ethnic organization. It aims to facilitate dialogue on a whole range of social issues, regardless of any particular faith or religion. It stands for democracy, human rights, the non-instrumentalisation of religion in politics, equality and freedom of speech.