Budd MacKenzie, a Lafayette resident, chosen one of 51 ‘Unsung Heroes of Compassion’, honored by the Dalai Lama on Feb. 23rd
In 1999, during a private audience with His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, Dick Grace of Grace Family Foundation shared the kernel of an idea he was formulating: Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could do a better job of transforming our contemplative practice into compassionate action. His Holiness enthusiastically embraced the idea replying, “We have to work hard on that.”
From this inspiration, the first Unsung Heroes of Compassion event was created in 2001, with subsequent events held in 2005 and 2009, and ‘Wisdom in Action’ was born.
Budd has learned many things through his efforts to bring humanitarian aid and education to villages and refugee camps in the Kabul district of Afghanistan; the simplest, he says, is that “givers are happier…and the more one gives, the happier one will be.”
In 2005, Budd launched Trust in Education (TIE), a nonprofit that harnesses the power of volunteers and donations to ease suffering and enhance the quality of life for Afghan children, women, and families.
Budd has inspired and overseen the distribution of more than 50 tons of donated clothing, enough food for 900,000 meals, construction of schools, and collection of medical supplies in the US and their distribution in Afghanistan.