We are very proud that our student Anisha is one 2,000 students who passed Nepal’s common entrance exam for medical school this year out of 18,000 applicants.“My aim is to become the first dental surgeon in my community,” she proudly tells us at The Small World’s office in Kathmandu.
She drove all the way from Salleri, district capital of the Solukhumbu region, the day before (which is a 10-hour drive) just to share the news to us and ask for help. You see, if Anisha is unable to pay 11 lakh rupees (approximately US $8,500) by the end of April 2023, then her dream of being admitted to medical school will not be realized.
Despite being one of just 560 prospective students selected to study dental surgery this year, Anisha’s family is not in a position to support her financially.
Even though Anisha’s father has a job - he himself is an oral hygienist - his earnings alone are not enough to support his family and send his daughter to university. Throughout high school, she received full scholarships, but now Anisha is out on her own. Unfortunately, the Nepali government does not offer bursaries to cover the tuition cost for the first year $ 8500 including admission, hostel, and rest four (4) years each year USD 4000.
“I have no idea what I’ll do if I can’t go to university,” she says. Already she has overcome so much to get where she is today - she had to leave the comfort and safety of her family home in Salleri and live alone in Kathmandu to go to a good science high school.
“My mom was very nervous to send me to Kathmandu, but my father told me I have to do it if I want a better life for myself.”
Her father and the support of The Small World has been the inspiration and driving force behind Anisha’s academic excellence. While many parents in communities from Nepal’s countryside discourage their daughters from pursuing an education, Anisha’s dad has been supporting her every step of the way. The Small World is the only hope in finding a way to get admitted into medical school.
While Anisha has been lucky to have a caring, supportive family, members of her community back home have not always been so kind. Anisha belongs to the Dalit caste - a so-called ‘low caste’ which often faces discrimination in all aspects of life. When Anisha was younger she remembers some families not allowing her into their homes, or not letting her play with their children because she was a Dalit.
Even though the caste system was legally abolished some time ago, people’s perceptions (especially in rural areas) are slow to change. In workplaces it’s also fairly common that Dalits and other marginalized castes face blatant discrimination and will often be overlooked for jobs, even if they are more educated or skilled than their so-called ‘higher caste’ competitors.
Despite the lack of warmth she has felt from some people in her society, Anisha is still determined to get qualified as a dentist and go back to serve her community. “In Salleri I see many children with dental problems… I want to help people, but also, I want to fight discrimination there,” she says.
Anisha explains that marginalized groups like women, lower castes, and elderly people often cannot get good healthcare, either because of financial constraints or societal misconceptions. “I want to decrease the gap between Dailts and other communities. If I become the first Dalit doctor in my community, this will be empowering to other Dalits also.”
The doctor-to-population ratio for the whole country is 1:1724. Like most developing nations, doctors are geographically mal- distributed in Nepal. The Kathmandu valley has one doctor for 850 people but in rural areas, the number is one doctor for every 150000 people.
She also believes that if she becomes a qualified medical professional and returns to Solukhumbu, she could serve as an inspiration to other young women there. In Nepal’s mountain villages, many girls are taken out of school early to work at home or get married off. “I hope to become a role model within my community, and raise awareness about what daughters can do when they are educated.”
Dear Friends, Namaste & Happy Holiday !!!
We would like to thank you all for your great support along our journey of The Small World. With the generous support of amazing donors, supporters, volunteers, Friends, and dedicated staff, we take pride in sharing what we have all accomplished together:
Over 100 of girls from our program are successfully serving in remote communities as Teachers, Nurses, Media persons, Civil Engineers, community mobilizers and more.
Both our children's homes, Arhaus Children and Himalayan Home are running well and serving over 108 socially dislocated, vulnerable children and those from financially poor families. We are proud to mention that both Children’s homes are coordinated by our graduated girls Usha Karki and Pasang Lhamu Sherpa.
Through our Seeds of Hope program, over 1,000 families received seeds as well as agriculture training, and among them, 200 families received Green House Tunnel, so they can grow fresh vegetables all year round. The seeds Of Hope program is also led by our own graduate students . So we take great pride in sharing this news with every single supporter that – since we started the girls education and support program 17 years ago, today many girls are supporting Small World as young leaders and girls are taking lead-roles giving back to the community. This is our ultimate dream come true! Little did we know we could come this far, when we just started educating the girls years ago.
Also, we would like to take this moment to share another wonderful piece of news: this year, The Obama Foundation’s Girls Alliance Opportunity has chosen The Small World as their Nepal Partner. We are probably the first organization to be recognized by The Obama Foundation in Nepal. It’s a great honor for us to work along with Global organizations like The Obama Foundation. The Girls Opportunity alliance is providing us special fundraising platform on www.gofundme.com highlighting our works and we plan to support more girls for their Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree education. In our workplace, the Himalayan remote communities, finding well-educated girls is quite an exception. According to UNESCO estimates, around the world, 129 million girls are out of school, including 32 million of primary school age, and 97 million of secondary school age. We plan to build a new norm in this region. We embrace our big dream of seeing more numbers of girls in leadership positions across industries, professions, and social setups by helping them acquire universities’ education and empowering them to take decisions for their own future.
The Small World is committed to seeing every girl prosper in her life. Our projects support the education of hundreds of girls and young women across the most remote Himalayan communities of Nepal. Working through interventions in education, agriculture, health, social protection, sanitation, water, and other sectors, we are making an even stronger commitment to support by ensuring that every girl receives the quality education she deserves.
But we can’t do this all alone. So, we need your support in this rewarding adventure, we hope you will join hands with us, for a cause that will change a girl’s life, eventually changing a family, community & world. Donate Now
THE CASE FOR PORTERS AND ONE FAMILY’S STORY
WELCOME, SUJATA TO SMALL WORLD CHILDREN’S HOME
During an Everest trek in late May, just two weeks ago, the Karki family lost their father, a porter, to sudden death from altitude sickness, leaving the family of four children and their mother destitute and facing starvation. After The Small World was alerted, we placed the eleven-year-old girl, Sujata, with her mother’s permission, in the Arhaus Children’s Home in Solukhumbu; the youngest child, nine years old, is being sponsored at home. For the other two children, fifteen and thirteen years old, we are seeking assistance to support their enrollment in the local school a half-hour walks away and for essential support for their mother and home.
As is commonly known, Nepal is famous worldwide for its magnificent mountains and has become a revered destination for international mountaineers and trekkers; the successful ascent of Everest, the highest mountain in the world, is a symbol of ultimate achievement within their ranks. However, it is highly doubtful that their dreams of “bagging the peaks” of Nepal would be attainable without the indispensable assistance of porters who carry heavy burdens on the grueling ascents. Because of their poverty and often dire circumstances, the porters accept untenable conditions, and inadequate compensation for their life-threatening labors, and are generally taken for granted without consideration for their health and welfare.
Every year, there are about a dozen porters that lose their lives on the job, with others losing their livelihood due to injuries sustained on the treks. According to Mr. Khum Subedi, the President of the Trekking Agent Association of Nepal (TAAN), porters are severely challenged by inadequate diet, clothing, health care, and checkups, and little to no support from trekking organizations that employ them; further, when organizations offer discounts, most tourists have no idea that the porters, before anyone else, are the first to bear the humiliation of reduced payment in, by Western standards, their already paltry pay.
To help break this glaring example of the cycle of poverty in Nepal, we believe it is vital to support today’s children with an education, providing them with qualifications for a better life and self-respect inconsistent with demeaning conditions.
In the meantime, it would seem essential and rightfully humane to grant and provide today’s porters with the respect and gratitude they have earned and deserve, along with provisions for their health and well-being as human beings instead of beasts of burden, if for no other reason than for their continued availability that is so essential to trekkers and mountaineers. It would seem highly advisable as well for trekking companies to display transparency about their treatment of the porters so vital to their trekking businesses. Their clients would want to know.
DONATE TO US
Namaste! & Thank you !!
Executive Director & Co-Founder
*The Small World*
Dear Friends and Supporters, Happy New Year !
As we put the finishing touches on another year, our team is grateful for your dedication during this most challenging year of 2021.
I just wanted to sincerely thank you for standing by us and believing in the life-changing work that The Small World does. I am really proud to share some of our major achievements and positive impacts that we have made together this year.
We couldn’t have achieved any of these remarkable results without your support on behalf of our team, the children, and the communities in which we work. Thank you so much..
Lean more about our achievement in the year of Pandemic 2021
Namaste ! and Thank you !
Karma and Sonam Sherpa
I am Rita and I was in grade 9. My father is a seasonal trekking porter and my mother is a housewife. Since Covid 19, my father could not get any work because tourists stopped coming and that hit us very hard, because without jobs we struggle to manage two meals every day.
Now all of us are at home without income, and though schools might resume this year in 2021, I won’t be able to go back because still there is no way my parents can afford to send me back to school, but to go to school and become a doctor is my dream.
Sometimes I feel like my dream is my happy place but my reality is in my life there is no escape, I wish there is a way so I am sending my application to The Small World for support.
The Small World has been dedicated for years to providing education to children and is convinced of its significance in breaking the cycle of poverty in Nepal.
Today, with the world still suffering from a global pandemic and forced lockdowns, tourism, a major source of income for Nepal, has been virtually nonexistent. With a dearth of tourists and no more burgeoning throngs of trekkers, porters and many others whose livelihoods depend on the tourism sector have been out of work for over a year.
Above and beyond the existing challenges for at risk children whose education and holistic wellbeing we have been supporting, the Covid-19 , lockdown and lost jobs situation has created a new classification of at-risk children, about 35 to 40% in rural areas, who had been attending school but have dropped out due to this loss of family income.
It’s an urgent matter, and we have developed this new program to help before the loss of education creates a crippling situation of further loss. We have seen evidence in the past that more serious future problems for their family and community will most likely manifest unless their education is restored.
• Our urgent hope is to provide 350 children with an education sponsorship program for just one year.
• $1.00 USD a day for one year & yearly $ 350 for a child will cover the school tuitions, uniforms, books, school bag, a set of clothing, and counseling for children and their families.
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