The Dalai Lama has expressed his condolences to the family of Mrs Irmtraut Wäger, who dedicated her life to the education and welfare of Tibetans in exile, following her death on October 2 at the age of 94.
Mrs Wäger, known as ‘Ama’ (mother in Tibetan), was the recipient of the International Campaign for Tibet’s Light of Truth of award in recognition for her work over 40 years as Chairperson of German Aid to Tibetans (Deutsche Tibethilfe e.V. ).
The Dalai Lama wrote to her family that in her passing, Tibetans have lost a friend who, until her last breath, kept the wellbeing of needy Tibetans close to her heart. He also said that among the many who have provided generous assistance to Tibetans, both young and old, in exile, Ama Wäger was perhaps unique. Not only was she generous herself, also directing the support of many other individuals in Germany to where it was most needed, but she personally visited those she helped in different Tibetan settlements and schools in India and Nepal. (Statement posted on the website of the Central Tibetan Administration at http://tibet.net/2014/10/04/his-holiness-the-dalai-lama-and-cta-saddened-by-passing-away-of-ama-Wäger/).
In a condolence message from the Central Tibetan Administration, Sikyong Lobsang Sangay said: “Ama Wäger’s humanitarian work has played a pivotal role in the sustenance of the Tibetan community in exile. She was truly a beacon of light that changed many lives for the better. Ama Wäger’s legacies will be remembered by Tibetans in the generations to come. Tibetans will remain forever indebted to her generosity.”
Ama Wäger was clearly moved to receive ICT’s Light of Truth award from the Dalai Lama in a ceremony in Berlin in 2005. She said that she felt “unlimited gratitude and greatly blessed”, and that she had appreciated His Holiness’ blessing for her work years ago when she first began.