Sue and Pauline went to visit each of the 6 school projects with Lamin from TMO with several goals:
We visited all six school communities that we support. We spent between 2 - 4 hours with each set of teachers listening and learning. It is very clear there is a hunger for development. The government schools we support are very much for the poorest in hte community. If any family has the slightest option they will send them to a private school. This is Not like a UK private school. You do have to pay but it very basic. The fact government schools are free but even poor families choose to go fee paying schools shows that the perception of some government schools need some help.
We discoverd how under valued the teachers feel and “third class citizen” was a regular and unpormpted phrase. IYH hopes to help this by investing in thier teacher training which they all seem keen to do. We have two 5 days residential courses planned for 2019 plus CPD between the course when a trainer will visit them at thier schools. We are working with First Steps, a charity that has been doing this work for 10 years. We did a pilot course this year which was a big success.
We have also learnt that any projects we do need to involve the School Management Committee and where bigger projects are considered, we need to involve the Rural Municipality. We are currently exploring ways to encourage and support community funding projects. Why? IYH will not be here for ever. They need to generate income independently of charity. Also, if a charity simply donates without engagement it is sure to fail. We have had this advice from several different people and organisations. This is probably most apparent with school lunches.
We have been supporting school lunches at Gorkha School for 18 months. Now we know we need to add conditions to this donation. Namely, a reduced contribution on a sliding scale each year with the promise of support of any suitable self funding project. The school lunches are essential for preventing drop out and enhancing performance. We are currently toy reviewing two more schools that may need support. However, we need to consult and engage with a future proof plan. TMO are helping us to foster ideas to put to the community.
Sue has been co-ordinating the Wonens Menstrual Project and what a great job! We have partnered with Days for Girls who came on our road trip with us to deliver two hours workshops before distribution of reusable sanitary packs. We were lucky enough to have Anjana and Mahalassme as trainers and both were just a joy. We delivered 5 workshops and delivers 376 packs. It was great to see such a gathering of women all keen to learn more. There was definitely a sense of “girl power” which I now know how to say in Nepalese.....kind of.
The Mandala Organisation Team: Mahendra, Milan, Shanta and Lamin
EQUATOR EXPEDITIONS: Rashmi and Mahendra offer their Sukete Resort to us as a base and tell us to treat it like home......we did! What an amaxing place.
SHORT FILM OF THE TRIP COMING SOON!
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