Project #4319

Train and Activate Inspired Leaders in Nepal

by The Jean Houston Foundation
Women's Social Artistry Leadership Training

May 2016 -- ICA Nepal collaborated with Rotary Club of Rudramati in promoting Social Artistry leadership training for Rotarians and non-Rotarians. They brought together leaders at Alpha Beta Training Center in Kathmandu to experience the skills of Social Artistry:

-To empower women in leadership and Social Artistry
-To develop a wide range of innate, but previously undiscovered human capacities.
-To create innovative solutions to critical issues confronting their communities and societies 
-To formulate models of change that can be utilized in a broad range of social institutions.

Janet and Evelyn were the visiting Social Artistry trainers who facilitated the training, assisted by the local Social Artistry trainers Pramila, Serela, Amba and Juju.

Evelyn commented after the training, “ Such strong vocal women who advocate for women’s rights to vote marry, speak when men are present, and be educated. Thanks to the men who stayed and know and support the truth. It is a labor of love and I am so impressed.” 

Many thanks to Pramila, Amba, TP, and many ICA Nepal staff who helped whisper translation when needed, set up, and cleaned up and took the long bus ride home in dusty traffic.

Janet, a Social Artistry pioneer taking on this cultural challenge, adds that Social Artistry works beautifully when you trust the local people in the culture like Tatwa and Sarala.

It is so gratifying to know that our financial and heart support for our Social Artistry trainers in Nepal is helping them to bring essential leadership skills to those who are leading the way in this brave and recovering country.

Trainers Evelyn, Janet and Amba honor women
Trainers Evelyn, Janet and Amba honor women
Devaka ji sharing women
Devaka ji sharing women's empowerment initiative

Devaka ji comes to visit at ICA Nepal with a few packets of paun (spiced dried fruits). The paun not only sells here in the Nepali market but is also sold in international markets. With locally grown plants, which actually grows in abundance in Changu the women of this progressive women’s group has changed the definition of ‘household women’.

Devaka ji, as much as she looks to be just another woman of a typical Nepali society, she is pushing the limits of the Nepali social construct for women. She continues to champion women and their possibilities to be more, to matter. This is why she has a bigger fish in her basket when it comes to achievements. Always enthused to work for community and its people, Devaka ji came in contact with ICA Nepal and is participating in various leadership trainings, devoting herself to community development and women empowerment.

She finished her SLC when other women her age were planning a family and she was not only planning her family but also planning the ways in which the women in her community along with her could prosper. Today she is the president of Chinnamasta Women Saving and Credit Cooperative Society Pvt. Ltd, which was a joint effort of Ms. Shrestha and ICA Nepal but mostly her determination. It has more than 800 members out of which 750 are active female members and has around 30 million transactions annually. The cooperative is now the leading financial institute in the area playing a major role in local development.

Before, the women in her village were limited to households, illiterate and considered themselves as weaker to their counterparts. But today changes can be observed in perception and practices. Women now are actively involved in income generating activities, such as tailoring, sewing clothes, making toys and dolls, pickle making and actively participate in community development activities such as taking care of the drinking water system; member of saving and credit programs etc.

She adds, “Male counterparts in my village have started appreciating the importance of women and therefore started welcoming the suggestions and participation of women in all spheres of life.

Your gifts are helping so many women in Nepal like Devaka ji. Thanks to you, Nepal and the world is a better place.

Women empowering women
Women empowering women
Participants and Trainers Gather
Participants and Trainers Gather

You have been supporting the work of our Nepali trainers to pepare leaders to help build their nation, and their work is even more crucial since the setback of major earthquakes.  We hope this report will give you a glimpse of some of that work, and how your support makes such a difference.

ICA Nepal, with the support of Jean Houston Foundation, conducted a two-day Social Artistry Leadership training in which the participants were leaders from four development organizations working with disabled people in communities. The training was conducted September 16-17.2015, in the building of ICA Nepal near Kathmandu with 22 enthusiastic participants. The participating organizations were:

1. Entire Power in Social Action (EPSA),

2. National Integrated Blind Development Association (NIBDA),

3. Creative group of “little” women,

4. Disabled Service Centre (DSC)

The major objective of this training was to develop creative leadership qualities among participants and enhance their psychological ability to achieve personal and organizational goals. Various exercises were carried out to help participants enhance their inner power of creative imagination and concentration. They had the opportunity to more fully apply the skills they were learning to strengthen their visions and goals. The facilitators were Dr. Tatwa Timsina, Mr. Atma Ram Timsina, Mr. Amba Datta Bhatta, and Ms Pramila KC.

The second day the participants remembered and shared moments of joy in their lives. It helped to teach them that amidst all the chaotic moments in life, 2 minutes of relaxation and remembering a happy moment will help to calm, be optimistic, and enhance the will power to face any adverse situation in life. They engaged in deep listening and story telling to learn the importance of listening deeply to others. One of the participants shared, “ Now I know that listening carefully to someone tell their story without judgment is an important quality for me as a leader.”

One of the most enjoyable and significant parts of the training was the Hearing Praises exercise where participants were divided into three per group. Each participant shared their personal goals and their partners whispered in each ear motivating words especially in support of their self confidence, reaching their goals, etc. This helped participants to feel stronger and more positive, and they also realized the powerful effect of motivating words.

This training was an important step to prepare community leaders to work with the handicapped people in their communities to help them recover from the trauma of the earthquakes, to cope with the loss of their homes and to go on in life with hope and vision.

Giving Praises Exercise
Giving Praises Exercise
Leaders making commitments to their visions
Leaders making commitments to their visions
Gaining Skills to Create Small Businesses
Gaining Skills to Create Small Businesses

ICA Nepal is working with Nepal Cloth Merchant and Tailoring Association (NCMTA), realizing the need to help people, citizens and leaders alike, to bring new mind to bear upon social change. NCMTA is working for inner capacity building, skill enhancement and empowerment of cloth merchants and those who are in involved in the tailoring business. Almost every village in Nepal has one or more members of the association.

Since 2010, NCMTA has been in collaboration with ICA Nepal in developing leadership of its associates using Social Artistry Leadership Training as one of the major tools/components for skill development of their members.

In 2013, a successful 2-day training was conducted in Nawalparasi district for members of NCMTA, where more than 70 participants participated. Among them, 58 were females and rest were males. The Social Artistry training was conducted prior to the 7-day design training. NCMTA team reported their members’ performance excelled in the design training because the Social Artistry Training tapped their inherent capacities for greater imagination, compassion, and resolve.

 In 2014 May, NCMTA Bhakatapur district hosted a 2-day Social Artistry Training for the members of Bhakatpur,, Lalitpur and Kathmandu Districts, with similar successful to previous trainings.

In June 2014, the 2-day Social Artistry Training was conducted by  NCMTA Dhaulagir Zone, where 55 participants from tailoring sector participated from three districts of Baglung, Magdi and Parbat. Among 55 participants, 25 were women tailoring entrepreneurs. The president of NCMTA Baglung Committee, Mr. Tejendra Bahadur Pariyar, expressed that " we are thankful to ICA for conducting such a leadership training comprising various tools that really changed the way we look at ourselves. The participants enjoyed the training and were highly motivated by the interpersonal skills they learned for themselves and for leadership in their work.

 NCMTA is using Social Artistry tools to bring new focus, perspectives, skills and fresh vision to its members, cloth and tailoring entrepreneurs. ICA Nepal’s coordination with NCMTA is an opportunity to work in a new paradigm with NCMTA in the development of capacities, skills and potentials, choices and commitments. We are just beginning to implement 2015 ICA and NCMTA plans to reach as many numbers of participants as possible and to develop social artists who can seek innovative solutions to troubling conditions and challenges. 

We would like to acknowledge each of you who continues to support the community building work in Nepal through training leaders throughout the country.

Tailer's Association District Training

The Social Artistry Leadership journey in Nepal that began in 2004 so far has been innovative and enlightening. ICA Nepal’s initiative to incorporate a Social Artistry approach in all its ventures now has been established on a regular basis. Here are some of the examples from 2014 that have changed lives and organizations for the better.

Social Artistry Training for Social Mobilizers, GIZ

Social Artistry Leadership Training was provided to social mobilizers nominated from GIZ. The course was a 12-day capacity building training for the mobilizers.The Social Artistry Leadership sessions were reported to be very effective and enlightening for the participants especially the “Deep Listening” exercise. The facilitators for the training were Atma Ram Timsina and Pramila K.C.

Social Artistry Orientation for PhD Scholars

On a regular basis Social Artistry orientations for PhD scholars are being conducted. The objective of this orientation is to present the basic concept of Social Artistry: how social artists help others to realize their innate personal qualities and understand the responsibility of personal and social transformation.

Social Artistry Leadership Training for Entrepreneurs, NCMTA

A two-day training was conducted at Nagarkot. The total number of participants was 23 who represented the executive committee of Nepal Cloth Merchant and Tailoring Association of Bhakatapur, Lalitpur, and Kathmandu districts.

Social Artistry Leadership Training for Differently Abled, BB Trust Network

With an objective of innovative application of the Social Artistry approach in wider scale, a workshop for various organizations working in the sector of differently abled was designed. Representatives of more than 15 organizations participated in the workshops.

Social Artistry Leadership Training for Educators at DAV School, Glen Buds and Oracle Ray Schools.

A two-day workshop for schoolteachers, mentors, and coordinators of DAV school was conducted. About 40 educators participated in the program along with the principal. The feedback for the training was quite positive. Similarly, half-day workshops were designed and delivered for teachers of Glen Buds and Oracle Ray Schools. The sessions were facilitated by Janet Sanders, Loren Weybright and Pramila KC.

Social Artists Get Together

Over the years of successful facilitations and teaching and learning experiences, it has been realized that a get-together of Nepali social practitioners and social artists is a must. Hence, an interaction program was arranged and invitations were sent to all the past associates. Overwhelmingly, most of them visited and attended the program where they shared their experiences and how they have been using the Social Artistry approach in their fields and lives. This was on the occasion of Janet Sander’s visit to Nepal, who is the international coordinator for Social Artistry and has supported the growth of Social Artistry leadership training in Nepal since its inception.

Social Artistry Micro Grants Projects

  • Social Artistry Orientation to School Youths – Gardening and landscaping in school
  • Social Artistry Leadership to Progressive Women’s Group – support to produce sanitary napkins.
  • Social Artistry Sanitation and Hygiene Campaign, Changu Narayan
  • Dental Camp at Changu Narayan Bhaktapur. More than 180 people participated in the program.

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Organization Information

The Jean Houston Foundation

Location: Ashland, OR - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Peggy Dean
Executive Director
Ashland, OR United States
$15,722 raised of $60,000 goal
192 donations
$44,278 to go
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