| Jul 20, 2022
Family of the Month - June
New Family Admitted in March, 2022
Single mother: Name Withheld for Privacy, Aged 36
Children: Anjila (Name changed), Aged 9 (Daughter)
Reet (Name changed) Aged 12 (Daughter)
Ram (Name changed) Aged 16 (son)
Name Withheld for Privacy was born to a farmer’s family in the hills in Kaski district. Her parents owned a small farm and some livestock, enough to feed a family of seven.
Name Withheld for Privacy attended the local school around 6 KM away and every day she would walk to her school and this barefoot lest her black-school-shoes would be damaged. She was a very good and diligent student, staying up late at night for her studies and this by candle-light due to frequent “load shedding”, as power cuts are called in Nepal. Name Withheld for Privacy had high aspirations, she wanted to become a nurse and encouraged by her teachers she was inspired and filled with hope.
But her parents decided otherwise and at the age of 17 they arranged a marriage with a 19-year-old from their village.
Name Withheld for Privacy did everything in her means, from trying to escape to threaten with suicide to avoid the faith in marrying a man she didn’t want and continue her studies. But it was all in vain, the collective pressure from her family and the whole village was too powerful and she had no choice but to surrender and accept her faith.
As the tradition in Nepal holds, Name Withheld for Privacy moved to the house of her in-laws. A young woman’s status when moving to the house of her in-law’s is often reduced to the status of a bonded laborer and they are treated like servants. A faith that Name Withheld for Privacy was now sharing with countless young women in Nepal.
Over the next ten years Name Withheld for Privacy gave birth to three children, first a boy named Ram (Name changed), followed by a girl named Reet (Name changed) and the youngest daughter Anjila (Name changed).
In the year 2015 when a devastating earthquake struck the western part of Nepal, their house was destroyed and things turned from bad to worse.
They had no other choice than moving to Pokhara in search for work and a place to live. They ended up in a makeshift-shanti in a slum in the vicinity of Pokhara and Roka (Name changed) found work as a day laborer.
Somehow, they managed to survive and the children attended Government school, but ends never met! For many slumdwellers the environment in the slums is conducive to drugs, gambling, prostitution and alcoholism and soon Roka (Name changed) would be wasting his daily wage in drinking and gambling and life became increasingly harsh for the family members.
Food insecurity and an increasingly violent husband and father made life hell for Name Withheld for Privacy and her three children. She worked day and night to feed her children and her abusive husband who stopped working. The compensation for her sacrifice was physical violence and abuse by her alcoholic husband.
Roka (Name changed) died in December 2021 at the age of 36, and this from the consequences of advanced alcoholism. A couple of months after his demise Name Withheld for Privacy applied for support at “BEF”.
Soon after the assessment of their situation, in March 2022, this Family was admitted as a new “Bahini-Educare-Family”.
When we informed Name Withheld for Privacy that from now, we would support her and her children and care for them, she said the following:
“When I was 17 years old all my dreams were shattered and I wanted to die; and the following 20 years have been a nightmare for me.
And now I can dream again, I can dream that my son will be an engineer and I can dream that my daughters will be nurses and that they will have a good life in independence! Thank you!!!”
Name Withheld for Privacy, your tears of joy and gratitude are our inspiration and we will do our best to make your dreams come true.
IT’S SIMPE; IT’S SIMPLY “BEF”
Surendra & the TEAM