Thursday, November 29, 2012

Children Needing Sponsors

Three of the last five children I posted have been sponsored so I have removed them.  The two in the presvious post are still waiting plus these:  Top is Rakesh who has been sponsored by NEF for at least five years and has now lost his sponsor, he is at private school which is now $350.00.  Bottom is Manu Pun who is not attending school as his mother is too poor.  Her hands are deformed from being burned after which her husband left her.  She now works in the river collecting rocks.  We would like to send Manu to school, his cost would be $125 for Government school.  Please contact me if you are interested.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Children that need sponsoring

 Salina Sunar age 5 yrs in Nursery Class
Salina is now sponsored

Ranjita 5 years old.  Two sisters.  Very poor family.
                                                              Ranjita is now sponsored

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Mann, NEF President, who works so hard for all of us, riding on the bus to Pokhara.
Liza, Mann' s little girl exercising with my band.  We love her and she keeps us always amused

SBCH Children's Home with Jenny their dog that was adopted from the KAT Centre a few months ago

Madelynn with Devitt our dog at the office/apartment who is spoiled by everyone in the building

Lori with Mann's new baby son, Prem

Bob with Puja and Mahalaxmi, Jagat's daughters who live upstairs and were our first sponsored children.
Mahalaxmi is now in college.

A bufflo outside the apartment, so gentle, the children climb all over him.

Children at Sima's Children Home enjoying he Tihar tika ceremony.  In red shirts from Qatar.

Children from SBCH dancing at our apartment on the eve of  Tihar or Dipawali.  So much fun.
Madelas like this one are made at every doorway on the eve of Tihar

Jagat who work for us at NEF
Here are some photos of a more personal nature of our Nepali family and around where we live in Nakhipot, Kathmandu.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Leaving Nepal

As usual when it is time to leave Nepal it is sad to say goodbye to so many friends, children, dogs and of course our Nepali family of Mann and Sima and their children and Jagat, Puspa and their children.

It has been a very busy trip with five different sponsors visiting and all the activities we have attended such as Kristi school and Phumbi Bumdi school etc.  Friends and sponsors Lori, Jay and Madelynn have been with us most of the time and they have thoroughly enjoyed their visit and seen things that they have never experienced before.

Things change in Kathmandu but not really for the better and the poverty never seems to improve.  I find myself wanting to help everywhere but know that this is not possible and have to keep my vision  of educating women and children in focus as this I feel is the only way to a better future and the best value for money.  Visiting some of our teenage students was very satisfying as I have seen them come so far and blossom.  Mann continues to do an excellent job in managing the charity and looking after sponsors when they visit.  Jagat still helps monitor children when he is not working as a trekking guide.  Chandra, who was working for us in Pokhara is now living in Kathmandu.  Unfortunately the shop he and his wife had he lost as the rent doubled and they could not afford it.  So I have asked him to work for us in Kathmandu and help Mann as he is becoming over worked.  Hopefully this will relieve Mann and the three can work well together.

NEF has been very lucky in having honest staff all these years and I can assure you that all your money goes to the cause.  I hear about other charities in Nepal that have financial and staff problems and feel so blessed with the success of NEF.  There are always small problems with some families as nothing is 100 percent but we deal with these as they come along but I can honestly say our track record with the children is extremely high.  I have seen many of them grow up into successful young men and women and this is very satisfying.  Likewise the schools we have assisted have helped hundreds of children have a better learning environment and education.

I look forward to returning to Nepal in March when I will visit all the children and schools.  Hopefully we will have another dental program at that time as well.  I matched three new children on this trip for the new school year in April.  We have five government children waiting for sponsors.

The photos below we're of the dog Tihar festival.  Madelynn and Mann with puppies and Lori with her mother and sister's sponsored children Prakash and Rabina.

I will post more photos here when I get home on the weekend as I am having problems downloading them.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


Madelynn with two puppies at KAT

These last three days that we are in Nepal is the festival of Tihar or Dipawali.  It is the festival of light and there is colour and light everywhere.  Strands of marigolds are everywhere and mandalas are made outside every door way and candles placed around them and on each step to the house.  There is lots of music and dancing in the streets and it is great to part of it.  Yesterday we celebrated the dog day or Kurkur Tihar here.  It is the blessing of dogs and we went to the KAT centre to be part of it.  KAT is the Kathmandu Animal Treatment centre.  Photos below.
Today we visited SBCH home which I used to be part of and where I used to stay.  The children here have grown up a lot and it is such a pleasure to be with them again even for a short while.  Tonight they came to our home and danced for us.  For this they get money, rice and food.  They go from house  to house doing this as is the custom.
I will have to add the photos tomorrow as at night there is not enough power to download them.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Bipana is 16 years old and recently married.  In Nepali culture girls are often married off at this age.  She lives with her husband's family as is the tradition here.  This an extremely poor family of ten members.  Bipana finished class 10 and wanted to go to college so her husband sold a very old TV they had to pay for the admission fee.  He could not pay the monthly fee so she had to drop out.  They had nothing else to sell.  She is desperate to go to college and it is the only hope for this family.  If she gets an education it will be a good example for the younger children in this family and hopefully then she can get a job.  I felt very sorry for her and told her I would try to get her a sponsor and her face lit up.  The cost for her would be $300 for this year as the admission fee is paid and next year $350.

Bipana is now sponsored.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Back in Kathmandu

Today we took the bus from Pokhara to Kathmandu which takes 7 hours.  It is a long rough ride with much to look at along the way.  the ride only costs about 8 dollars, very cheap.  We had a busy but enjoyable time in Pokhara.  Visiting Daumaya in the hospital was upsetting but I am happy to say she has been discharged today.  The condition of the hospital was very distressing.  We certainly are so lucky in Canada and other Western countries to have the high quality medical care and hospitals that we have and free.   A doctor approached me and asked if we could provide some beds which they desperately need.  The bedside table that Daumaya had was all covered in rust so they need those also.  There are so many needs in this country so we have to stick to our agenda of education and schools as best we can although it is easy to want to help in other areas.
We have seen a lot of children but not all of them as this is the time of the two big festivals, Dashain and Tihar so many families are away in their villages visiting relatives so it makes it difficult to visit a lot of people.  Our projects in Kristi, Gunjara and Phumbi Bumdi are progressing well.  Lori and Jay who are here with us are really having an enjoyable and interesting trip.  They have also been very generous to the families that they are sponsoring and by providing for our ladies' literacy picnic.
This week we have more children to visit and as it is Tihar we are going to take part in the Feeding the Street Dog Day which happens on the Kurkur Tihar Day.  [Dog Day].  On this day dogs are blessed and given Tikas on their heads and flower Malas hung around their necks.  The animal treatment centre KAT has planned to feed the street dogs this day and we are looking forward to taking part.
I now have picked up a cold so am going to bed early.  As I lay on my bed it sounds as if a hundred dogs are barking and that continues all night.  Thank goodness for ear plugs but I take them out in the early morning as I love to hear the roosters.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Literacy Ladies

Today I saw a lot of my literacy ladies and as usual they were delightful and so grateful.  How I love these ladies.  Yesterday we held a picnic for them and some of the children.  We could not include all the children as there were just too many.  As it was we had over 70 people on one bus!  The ladies prepared all the vegetables and chickens.  Lori and Jay enjoyed helping with this.  We had rice and lentils which is dhal baht, takari, which is curried vegetables, samosas, tea and oranges.  the oranges being local as they grow here.  We played games and danced.  How the ladies love to dance.  We left at 9 and left for home just after 3 on the crowded school bus.  We had the picnic by the river at Dhampus.  On my first trip to Nepal in 2001 we finished our trek here, so much has transpired since then.  Lori and Jay paid for the picnic so our thanks go to them and they totally enjoyed the experience.

Today I took photos and matched some new ladies or ones that want to come back into the program.  One new lady had badly deformed hands from being burned.  She was extremely poor and asked us to sponsor her nine year old son who has never been to school.  I do not have a sponsor for him right now but said I would try for the future.  She has no husband as he left after she was burned so she works in the river at the quarry earning a small amount of money.  I was surprised when she came to the literacy classroom but she said she wanted to be part of it.  So I matched her with a new sponsor I had.

So after being loaded up with flowers I said my goodbyes till next time and feeling totally satisfied with a job well done I left.  This literacy program brings so much joy to the women and in turn to me.
I am having trouble uploading photos so will try tomorrow.
Construction at Kristi School

Two girls at Phumbi Bumdi in red shirts donated from Qatar

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Mother and her child

Painting at Phumbi Bumdi

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Busy Few Days

I am having trouble with internet connections so a lot has happened since the last post. 

We visited Simpani and some of the children there and both schools.  The government school is much improved and some new rooms are being built.  We showed the sponsors, Lori and Jay and their daughter,  the science lab that NEF put in a few years ago.  The compound has all been cleaned up and a wall built.  The sponsors visited their child and family which went well.  I had some letters to give out to women and children and we gathered those in a classroom and handed them out.  We read the letters to those who could not read them.  As usual these are always received with joy and gratitude.  We also gave out clothes.  We then took the sponsors to visit their other family on the far side of town.  This family of three,. a mother and two children, is very destitute and Lori and Jay bought them a month's supply of food. 

Yesterday we visited Phumbi Bumdi as Jay wanted to paint a school room so this we arranged to do.  The Annurpurna Rotary helped with organizing and several of them came along.  First they took us to the top of the village to see the amazing view of the Annurpurna range which is breath taking.  Then there was a ceremony to thank us for previous work and for the painting.  The painting commenced after cleaning the walls and scraping.  The first coat was applied and after a excellent meal of dhal bhat the second coat was applied.  Personally I did not paint but spent the time with the children and women practising Nepali language and we also gave out the clothes that had been sent from Qatar.  Our donors, Keith and Carol from Doha, have done work at this school and it is a favourite of theirs, so we thought it a good place to give out the clothes donated by them.

Today Bob and I spent most of the day visiting one of our ladies at the hospital.  She is quite sick with a women's problem.  I asked her if she had eaten and she had had nothing to eat since being admitted two days ago.  In Nepali hospitals the patient has to pay for everything and relatives have to bring in their food.  Her sister was with her but they had no money for food because they had to pay for the medicine and blood transfusions she needed and they had no money left.  We went and bought dhal bhat for them and later went and got fruit and samosas.  When we arrived with this the sister broke down and cried.  My heart broke for them.  Both have no husbands and they have children to care for and do manual labour for little money.  I sometimes cannot grasp how some of us have everything and others totally nothing, it just does not seem fair.  For these ladies life is a constant struggle wondering where the next meal for their children will come from.  If they get sick they can literally die for lack of money to pay the medical bills. 

Tomorrow we are having a picnic for the women and children.  Photos will have to be later because of internet connections.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Kristi School

Lori giving out school supplies.
Presenting the school with the "Lakshmi" print by Coco Jones.

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Today we visited Kristi School which is a village with beautiful views over the Pokhara valley and the surrounding Annurpurna mountains.  NEF has been helping to rebuild the Kristi School over the last few months.  Today we took our sponsors Lori, Jay and their daughter Madelynn who had a fundraiser to help this school, to visit there.  also along was another sponsor, Jim and the Annurpurna Rotary.  It was a gorgeous day with clear skies and great views.  There was a small ceremony to thank us and Lori, Jay and Madelynn gave out some school supplies and footballs.  The school committee was very grateful and the little children were very happy.  The enrolment has increased since we started helping from 35 to 59 and will continue to grow as the school is completed.  Lori and Jay said it was the most fantastic, heartwarming and humbling day.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Another Sponsor meets their Family

Today Yvonne, who is from Golden, BC, met the family she sponsors in Simpani, Pokara.  She sponsors the two children, Akriti and Ayush, and also the mother Anju in the literacy program.  It was a wonderful meeting.  Anju was very shy at first but soon warmed up and sat beside Yvonne and showed the family photo album.  She cooked us a delicious meal as well.  Yvonne promised to return in the future and stay a night with Anju and her family.  I am sure they will look forward to that.  Yvonne said that she felt bonded to them by the letters but now that she had met the family she felt even more connected and part of it.  We also showed her the school where they all attend.

Last night we had an enjoyable dinner with Yvonne and John and Len.  John is Carol and Keith's son from Doha, Qatar.  Two days ago they went to Gunjara village school where we replaced the roof earlier this year with a donation from Qatar donors.  They said they very much enjoyed it and it was a great experience.  Len has picked out a child he wishes to sponsor called Bijay.  Bijay lives at a children's home run by Mann's wife Sima.