Educate the Children

Educate the Children works with women and children in Nepal to improve health, welfare, and self-sufficiency by building skills that families can pass down to later generations. Focusing on the poorest of the poor by working strategically through women's groups, schools, and agriculture groups, Educate the Children develops a comprehensive community presence, gaining an extraordinary level of local participation and trust.
Jul 22, 2015

Getting Back to the Business of Learning

Destroyed classroom (photo by Mark Turin)
Destroyed classroom (photo by Mark Turin)

The ground still shakes a little on most days - but the kids are back in school!

As you know, the severe spring earthquakes destroyed almost all school facilities in the Dolakha villages where ETC works. Each of the 30 schools with which ETC has partnered since mid-2014 was damaged seriously, if not flattened. You can see some "before" and "after" photos by clicking on the link below. Aftershocks continue to occur frequently in Dolakha, making it abundantly clear that rebuilt permanent school facilities need to be quake-resistant; most of the old buildings were not, but the very few newer buildings fared much better. 

Rebuilding permanent schools will be a lengthy and expensive process involving many partners, including national and district-level government education offices as well as local residents and school personnel. The 3,000+ children who attend these schools cannot reasonably have their educations suspended until the schools can be permanently rebuilt.

With that in mind, ETC is supporting temporary learning centers (TLCs) at the 30 schools in our current project area. As of early July, we had provided building materials and technical support for the construction of TLCs at each of the schools; 90% of those temporary classrooms are built, and the other 10% are underway and will soon be completed. You can see a photo of a two-room TLC, made with support from ETC and USAID, below.

Moreover, we have provided classroom and school supplies and recreational materials (balls, jump ropes, etc.) to replace those destroyed when homes and schools collapsed. Ten schools and their students and teachers have already received these materials, and the others will soon receive theirs. The recreational materials are just as important as the academic materials, because even if just for a short while, children can forget their troubles in play as they did before their lives were upended.

Our staff reports that although the logistics are difficult - for example, the TLCs have smaller capacity than the now-ruined buildings did, so that classes have to take it in shifts to use these facilities - things are as back to normal as can be expected under the circumstances. Teachers, students, and families are relieved to have lost less school time than could otherwise have been the case. 

We are very grateful to you, our supporters, for helping thousands of children in Nepal get back to the important business of learning. Their future truly does depend on having the opportunity to be educated now!

Please do not hesitate to e-mail me at director@etc-nepal.org if you have any questions or comments about this update, or about ETC's work in general.

Building a TLC
Building a TLC
Temporary classrooms in use
Temporary classrooms in use

Links:

Jun 24, 2015

June update: Getting Nepal's kids back to school!

Niko Bhumi Higher Secondary School, pre-quakes
Niko Bhumi Higher Secondary School, pre-quakes

Although it sometimes seems as though years have passed, in reality it has been only two months since the massive 7.8-magnitude earthquake devastated Nepal, and a month and a half since the second 7.3-magnitude quake. Since then, Educate the Children's Nepal-based staff has been very busy indeed, helping ensure that kids can get back to school.

ETC has provided building materials and technical/logistical support to eight Dolakha District schools for temporary learning centers (TLCs), including Niko Bhumi Higher Secondary School (photos attached). All 30 schools in ETC's current project area were badly damaged or destroyed. It is our goal to support TLC construction at all 30 of these schools, as well as at 26 schools in the other Dolakha villages where we worked from 2008-2014, funding permitting.

ETC has provided school supplies and classroom/recreational materials at eighteen Dolakha District schools, to replace those lost when schools and homes collapsed. Again, we will support all 30 schools and all 3,000+ students in our current project area in this way, and (funding permitting) will also provide similar support at other schools with which we have worked in past years.

Last but not least, our fantastic Education Director Mr. Laxmi Basukala has written a book, soon to be published, that will be distributed to as many teachers and kids as possible. The book is designed to help the kids cope with the psychological trauma and lingering effects that many of them have experienced. Professionally developed resources of this kind are scarce in rural Nepali villages, and we congratulate Mr. Basukala for having conceived the idea in the first place and for having followed through with it so quickly, especially given everything else he has had to do recently.

We are very grateful to you, our friends and supporters, for making this work possible. Conditions in Nepal are not "normal" at present, and probably will not be for a long while to come. That said, it is so important - not only for the students and their families, but also for the well-being of these communities as a whole - that the kids can resume their interrupted educations and get on with their lives!

Niko Bhumi HSS, post-quakes - same camera angle
Niko Bhumi HSS, post-quakes - same camera angle
Diligent pupil studies at home (photo: M. Turin)
Diligent pupil studies at home (photo: M. Turin)

Links:

May 18, 2015

Rebuilding Schools in Nepal: May Update

A ruined classroom
A ruined classroom

Early last week, three of ETC's staff members were in the Dolakha District, going from village to village and assessing the situation (including the condition of the schools), to determine how ETC can most effectively help the quake victims. They had managed to catch a ride on a passing Jeep and were on their way to visit the next village on their itinerary when the second major earthquake struck on May 12th. One staff member reported as follows:

"Suddenly, we heard a huge hiss sound and saw vibration of trees along the sides of the road. We all became...horrified as the quake struck...and [we] jumped from the jeep to the road. We could not walk for around half an hour because of severe pain [in] our legs. After this we saw dust everywhere produced due to several landslides and damage of houses....There is no [longer] any house having roof and wall. "

The schools in rural Nepal have fared as badly as the homes. Unsurprisingly, the oldest and least structurally sound have been the most badly damaged, whereas the relatively new buildings and some that had been improved are not as badly damaged. Sadly, many of the schools I visited just three months ago were among the hardest hit. These were schools at which ETC had planned to make significant improvements over the next few years. 

All children need and deserve safe places to learn. Some of their schools will probably be beyond repair and will need, in effect, to be reconstructed from the ground up. Others may be easier to repair more quickly. In many cases, temporary school shelters will be needed to help children get back to as close to a normal life as possible.

In the aftermath of this second quake (which, according to many, was technically an aftershock - of magnitude 7.3!), ETC is committed to finding the best way to help Nepali children resume their interrupted educations. Your support of our work is very important and greatly appreciated.

Please visit our website to see the latest photo essay about the condition of several schools in Dolakha District. 

Links:

donate now:

Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
  • $16
    give
  • $40
    give
  • $100
    give
  • $300
    give
  • $500
    give
  • $1,000
    give
  • $16
    each month
    give
  • $40
    each month
    give
  • $100
    each month
    give
  • $300
    each month
    give
  • $500
    each month
    give
  • $1,000
    each month
    give
  • $
    give
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?

Reviews of Educate the Children

Great Nonprofits
Read and write reviews about Educate the Children on GreatNonProfits.org.