The Lhomon Society was established in 2011 by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, one of Bhutan's most beloved Buddhist teachers. It is Bhutan’s first major civil society development project with a mission to foster genuine GNH-based development in harmony with government goals. Lhomon Society's purpose is to raise living standards in Bhutan in an ecologically friendly way, and to establish food security and self-sufficiency, while fully protecting and enhancing the natural environment, strengthening communities, promoting Bhutan's unique culture, stemming the rural-urban migration tide, and fostering a cooperative, productive, entrepreneurial, and self-reliant spirit.
Lhomon Society has two primary projects: The Samdrup Jonghkhar Initiative and Lhomon education (LME). The Samdrup Jongkhar Initiative (SJI) was the Society's first project and remains a vital part of the organization with its focus on organic agriculture and appropriate technology.
Lhomon Education is a grassroots initiative fostering the development of innovative curricula designed specifically for Bhutanese students. The basis of the LME initiative is an alternative model of teacher training and curriculum development that integrates principles of Gross National Happiness (GNH) in the truest sense of the term. Based on the overarching mission the Lhomon Society, and on the values and principles laid out in in the LME Framework, Lhomon Education is helping teachers create innovative GNH-based curricula for use in a variety of education environments. LME curriculum development workshops and teacher training seminars are open to a wide range of education institutions, including government schools, monasteries, nunneries, women's organizations, rural education centers, and other formal and non-formal education institutions and initiatives in Bhutan.
Lho, in Bhutanese, means south or southern, and Mon refers to the people of the southern regions of Bhutan and the surrounding subtropical regions of Assam and Burma. Rinpoche chose the name to indicate that people are unified not only by government country borders but by the natural environments in which they live.
Government leaders and agencies have voiced strong support for the work of Lhomon Society Projects from the Honourable Prime Minister to the Agriculture Minister, Vice Chancellor of the Royal University of Bhutan, the Secretary of Education, Secretary of the GNH Commission, Director of the National Statistics Bureau, and President of the Centre for Bhutan Studies.
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