feb -24 -mon - today i spoke at Sann International College about my volunteer work in Nepal for the last ten years. The presentation of our 8 minute video interested the students. Principal Chandra Dhungel asked me to speak to encourage the students to make voluteering a part of their lives....My dentist dr. Subhash Ghimire is chairman of this school and heard of my visit and refunded me $150. I will add another $150 from Nepal Kids and donate $300 to a Sann's supported home for 20 children in our name. The students will learn how to spend the $300 for charity and experience the 'joy of giving'.
I paid the balance on my$28 -eight pound- birthday cake, the 41 pair of 'sports shoes' boxes were placed on the long library table and then I went with Amit, Raju and Sanjeev across the flowing sewer called the Bagmati river, to get the ten kilos of chicken i promised for dinner. Meat is a treat here in nepal especially for orphans.....the bonfire was burning before dinner was finished. The children wore their new shoes. Two malas - side drums - were played to Nepalese songs and dancing. Friends and former residents came to visit and my birthday cake was large enough to be enjoyed by all.
feb 28 - 29, friday - saturday This morning i returned to st devi's aademy by $3 taxi in time to bathe and attend 10 o'clock classes until 2pm. I then lseft by microvan to Chandra's Flag shop in Durbar temple area to by by motorbike to the Disabled Home to spend Friday night, as usual, with the children. I remembered the last bag of starlight mints from America...A volunteer student is staying here for four months....I went to the wood carving area to order some handicraft gifts....I spoke with an Austrailian UNESCO worker who visited on motorbike....a cold rain started and continued for the rest of the night. A forty minute bike ride left me at Paropakar Orphanage. There was no heat and bed bugs are a problem so i decided to return to St Devi's after a few hours visit.
Mar 3rd - mon -SEVA Eye Headquarters. I met with Parima and Sharavan and gave the $350 donation to be sent to th;e eye clinic in the town of Pyuthan in the west of Nepal for the care of the 10 or 12 blind and low vision children who are roomed behind the government school. My friend and former student Su san will manage the donation....I just left the Sann's college where I met with the four students who will manage the $300 in items for the 12 boys and 8 girls at the Helping Hands Home. The program is set for next Monday march 10.
tues - march 4th - a website
Bicky, Chandra Flag shop's son, is willing to make a website for our Nepal Kids organization. "Cheapest and best" he told is programmer Mehesh, which is fine with me. I will need help when i come home as to where to go and what to do with this work.
wed - march 5th - Pakistan
Pastor David and Devi left for Church business for five days in Pakistan. I gave Devi the second part of our $1000 donation before they left.The school gives a good educaion at a moderate price with excellent results in this area of Kathmandu. The 85 children in the hostel part of the school are a mixed lot, some orphans, semi-orphans, boarding or poor make up the lot. There are six new unsponsored children this year ages 5 to 9 years old. The work is 24-7 and I admire them greatly.
fri - march 7th - Newari Wedding for Daya Ram's daughter
Beautiful saris in shades of red for good luck were worn by the women and a wedding is time to show off your gold oraments. Forty foot long woven mats were placed on the floor back to back for seating. Dried leaf 'paper plates' were formed to serve as dishes. Fried meat, beaten flat rice, beans and vegetables were served with rice wine, home made beer and a clear whiskey....I gave Daya Ram the second $500 of our donation. Seven young blind and deaf and one physically and mentally handicapped children were added this year for a total of 42 children at the home. The first disabled home in Nepal, donated by a Swiss group, is being built by hand across the road.
sat - march 8th
Time to say 'good bye' to the thirty seven boys at Porapakar Orphanage. Amit went out for samosa, a deep fried pastry with spicy beans and potato filling. I went to the temple area and bought four maskes for gifts. A fire was made from an old school desk. Songs were sung and some younger were encouraged to dance. I slept on the floor of an upstairs room that was bed bug free.
mon - march 10- Sanns College
Twelve student and I went to the Helping Hands Children Home by school bus this afternoon. The program of sacks of rice and cooking oil, school bags, towels, toothbrushs, snacks, fruit and four tin trunks were made to the 21 children that the school bus driver and his wife provide for. I insisted that the students take turn in giving the gifts to the children with a picture taken with each child. all went well. This is our last program and I leave for thailand this thursday for one week.
It is time for a breakfast of rice and vegetables, and then to class at ten.
All of our nine programs were successful this year. Because of the rise in the value of the US dollar we were able to increase our donations by 30% or more and add three new donations to Eternity and Helping Hands orphanages plus a Rotary donation for a modest playground area for day worker's children.
We will have more children's eyes examined, more free eye glasses will be given and our low vision program will reach more children. The two blind homes and the disabled children's home will have more to spend on day to day necessities as will the four orphanages, homes and hostels.
I am often only asked "where are you from?" I am proud to represent my country while I am here in Nepal.
I want to thank all who have helped and supported me with this work. I don't do this alone.