Our office suffered critical structural damage in the April 25th earthquake, and thanks to donors like you, we have raised enough funds to rebuild our office. A safe, earthquake-resistant venue will allow us to continue developing the next generation of female leaders and change-makers in Nepal. The new renovations will almost triple the size of our facilities, enabling us to scale our impact and achieve our vision of women leading change alongside men in Nepal.
This safe space will create an effective learning environment for over 5,000 young women in the next three years. The hall will be used by Women LEAD to equip the next generation of female leaders in Nepal with the skills and knowledge they need to drive change. Additionally, young change-makers will have access to this space to pilot their own earthquake recovery initiatives, empower other youth, and become bold change agents.
We will be closing our project page as we have reached our funding goal. Construction for our new office will begin in February, and you can receive monthly updates of our rebuilding progress by subscribing to our newsletter: http://women-lead.org/get-involved.
Thank you so much for your support! We are so grateful for your generous donation and hope you stay connected with us.
By Stephanie Arzate | Research and Communications Fellow
Program alumni Sujata distributing supplies
Six months have passed in Nepal since the devestating April 25th earthquake. While the country has returned to certain sense of normalcy, Nepal has just started a lengthy reconstruction process that will last for years to come. As we wrote to you in our last project report, our commitment as an organization is to ensure that this tragedy becomes an opportunity to rebuild a stronger Nepal with young women leading the way.
Immediately following the earthquake, LEADers and alumni came to the Women LEAD office and developed an ‘Education Relief Project’. Our LEADers and alumni also developed and executed their own relief project. Program alumni Sujata, for example, was actively involved in in the LEAD Education Relief Project and went on to launch her own Crowdrise Campaign to sponsor school uniforms, text books, stationery and exam fees for students affected by the earthquake. As she wrote on her campaign page, "I know how it feels lacking money to pay for tuition fees—the only reason I can afford university is because I got 2 years’ scholarship from Wedu for my BBA, to which I got connected through Women LEAD. The reason I can now help children who have lost their home and can’t afford school is because someone invested in my education."
In order to double her impact, Women LEAD promised to match her donation and contributed $240 to her campaign. Sujata then went on to raise $510 and donated materials for 20 students in need, 15 more that she originally intended.
Moving forward, Women LEAD will continue to support earthquake relief initiatives from young women like Sujata. Thank you for supporting the extraordinary leadership and resilience of our LEADers and their on-going efforts to rebuild Nepal!
The past three months our LEADers have stepped up in their community as grassroots organizers and were among the first responders, utilizing skills learned through Women LEAD to coordinate relief and recovery efforts. Our commitment as an organization is to ensure that this tragedy becomes an opportunity to rebuild a stronger Nepal with young women leading the way. Women LEAD has been coordinating and facilitating various opportunities for our current LEADers and alumni to be involved in relief and recovery efforts while providing a safe space to process and heal.
Immediately following the earthquake LEADers and alumni came to the Women LEAD office, despite their own severe losses and trauma, and developed an ‘Education Relief Project’. The ‘Education Relief Project’ provided crucial study materials and books for students in grade 11 and 12 that had lost their school materials due to the earthquake. LEADers and alumni gathered all necessary books and notes from various faculties and created study kits that included notebooks, pens, pencils and calculators. The vital study kits were distributed to the most affected areas throughout Kathmandu Valley and in rural areas Sindhupalchowk and Gorkha. The study kits reached 8 different districts and were distributed to 200 students.
Rumi, Grade 11, Khokana:(Student who received a study kit) “Getting the books from the LEAD relief project was a big help. After getting the study kits my confidence really increased and I got the motivation to study too. During the time of the earthquake our whole house collapsed and our income was low. My books were buried under rubble and I thought I’d fail the exams. Thanks to Women LEAD for helping me.”
Field Innovation Team a disaster response team based in the United States deployed a team to Nepal to work with Women LEAD on the ground providing emergency response training and youth empowerment activities. LEADers and alumni were equipped with the tools to respond to emergencies and learned various ways to empower their peers, youth and communities who have survived a disaster. LEADers and alumni facilitated the youth empowerment activities in five different schools with over 300 students who have been affected by the earthquake. Along with facilitating activities in schools they have been part of rebuilding projects, working with All Hands Volunteers building a temporary learning center. The temporary learning center was built in Kavre district where a school had been destroyed by the earthquake. They worked tirelessly removing rubble, digging holes, hauling bamboo and helping build the temporary learning center providing children a safe place to resume classes.
LEADers and alumni have also been busy creating and developing their own innovative relief and recovery projects. LEADers Saniya and Sujata, distributed mosquito nets and flashlights to 53 families in one of the hardest hit rural areas, Sindhupalchowk. Alumni Aishwarya coordinated with Women on a Mission an organization based in Singapore, collecting 51 boxes of clothing and distributing them to 7 Village Development Committees throughout Lalitpur district and alumni Sujata developed an education support project that will help support students affected by the earthquake by covering their school fees for one year.
Women LEAD held a three-day workshop hosted by Abby on story sharing through poetry and dance. The workshops gave participants an opportunity to talk about, process and express their experience during the earthquake and how they have been coping the past three months.
LEADer Jemie: "The (poetry/dance) workshop was such a healing tool for us to get rid of our trauma. Combining the three elements- art, poetry and dance was interesting and new to us. The writing kept pushing us to be creative and the dance kept us energized throughout the workshop."
Thank you for supporting the extraordinary leadership and resilience of our LEADers and their on-going efforts to rebuild Nepal!
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