Monday, August 19, 2013

Last week at PoD Nepal.

Begnas Tal the 'other lake' about 20 minutes from where the volunteers stay

It's been a busy week here at PoD Nepal (I feel like I start every blog post off that way, as lets be honest, it's always busy here!). When the volunteers haven't been at work they have been spending their time visiting Begnas Tal, the Peace Pagoda, Chitwan Safari Park, Paragliding and Rafting (we've got an active bunch here at the moment) and we also had the pleasure of celebrating Laura's 18th birthday this week! 

On Friday's we always volunteer as a group at the Asha Fondation which is about 20 minutes by taxi and then a beautiful 30 minutes walk through rice paddies. This week we thought it would be nice to do tie dye Tshirts with them, but as I failed in finding the dye, we decided to do some painting instead. It was great to get ALL the children involved. The children at Asha are from 5 to 15 years old so it is often hard to find an activity that would suit them all, but painting is the way forward I think! They were all very creative and came out with some great artwork that hopefully will be up on the walls once it is dry. 

We have been working closely with SOSBahini, a girls refuge for a few years now, but previously only on Saturdays or during school holidays. However, Raymond, the director has recently asked me if volunteers would be interested in helping out between 3-6pm, after school either in the HUB where some of the younger children are, or in the Crossroads house which is where they older girls stay who are doing their nursing, or higher education studies. Most of the girls go to local government schools which means the level of English they are taught is generally quite low (you would be surprised to hear that many of the English teachers, do not actually know English themselves and simply read from the books) and so Raymond would like us to help with their homework and conversational English. By us being there, they chat in English, build up their confidence and improve their vocabulary. In Nepal, learning English is crucial for them for their future so obviously we are more than happy to help out.

I was in for a surprise when I visited Bahini on Monday however. When I went on Thursday I noticed how fat Luna, their dog had been getting, but was told she was just getting old and lazy, but then the very next day we were greeted by 9 adorable new puppies! Mum and pups are all doing well and they have made Luna a lovely little room with straw and blankets and are keeping her very comfortable. What a lovely surprise!

We also had the pleasure of taking ALL the children from the Street Children's Rehabilitation Center (plus one of the neighbour boys who snuck in!) out for pizza in Lakeside Pokhara. For those of you who already know the kids, will know that this is a great trip as they rarely get to venture into Lakeside and their normal diet is Dal Bhat (the Nepali traditional dish) twice a day. You can see from the looks on their faces how happy they were! They demolished 9 pizza's in under 30 minutes!! I'd like the say thank you to all the volunteers for coming along to this evening as it was such a great night (Although B.J, one of the youngest kids, might have over done it slightly as he vomited quickly afterwards!) 

I know many of you will be wondering how Annapurna Primary School is getting on since the burglary, and I am happy to say they are doing surprisingly well. We have re-stocked them with some basics (pencils, paper etc) and have told them that we will help get some items for the nursery once they have improved their security. Currently there is a gap between the walls and the roof and that is how the burglars got in, Bina (the head teacher) is having a meeting with all the Board Members to get this sorted. So that is good news as well. Two of our current volunteers went to Tika's house (one of the teachers at APS) for lunch at the weekend which was a lovely afternoon and a great way to get to know the teachers better.

It is slowly getting cooler in Nepal now and we are starting to see the mountains a bit more regularly.

If you would like to join our team out here in Nepal then please contact Gemma on

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