- Observing the impact of the teacher training - more children’s work was displ
Our 2018 trip to visit the IYH projects in Nepal (8 - 17 February 2018)
A group of IYH members and supporters have just spent 10 days in Nepal visiting IYH’s schools and seeing first-hand the benefits of the different projects in these remote communities.
We were a big group - 17 in total including 10 great kids / young adults aged between 12 and 18. The British contingent travelled out together, meeting up with our Canadian friends in the Kathmandu Guesthouse with its beautiful garden and first class chicken momos. We were also reunited with the fabulous team from The Mandala Organisation (TMO) - Mahendra, Milan and Shanta who have done so much to deliver IYH’s projects, as well as our newer colleagues Annu and Vanessa who have got the teacher training off to such a good start.
The IYH schools are not easy to get to and TMO’s support with the transport, drivers and accommodation was invaluable. Those who had visited before were struck by the amount of new building work in the area - ongoing recovery from the 2015 earthquake is finally underway. We spent 3 nights at Sukute Beach Resort visiting the schools in the Sindapalchowk region and using jeeps to navigate the twisting dusty mountain roads. We then returned to Kathmandu from where we visited Gorkha in one very long day - over 8 hours in crawling traffic.
At each school we received the warmest of welcomes. We were given khata scarves and garlands and colourfulred tikka. The teaching staff made impassioned speeches explaining why IYH’s work is so important to them and their communities, and shared their hopes for the future. Parents crowded round to see the children receive their new uniforms and bags, and teachers gave us tours of the class rooms and facilities. The whole experience will remain with us always - some highlights were:
- Seeing the children try on their new warm uniforms - zipping up the fleece jackets, feeling the warm lining of the girls’ leggings, lacing up the new smart black shoes and finding the pockets in all their new clothes;
- Presenting the 15 computers to Shree Jaldevi Secondary School - a generous gift from The British International School in Phuket, and something that will change the education experience for so many children;
- Observing the impact of the teacher training - more children’s work was displayed on the walls, paintings and posters were also on display, and teaching resources are being kept in good condition;
- Joining the 135 children at Gorkha Primary School as they ate their freshly prepared school lunches - a new initiative to support the children’s health, and one that is encouraging school attendance. This fabulous project is thanks to our wonderful friends in Italy, Patrizia and Fabrizio Capanna who are sponsoring this initiative for a second year from May 2018;
- Hearing for ourselves the improved English language skills of the children who have been exposed to IYH volunteers; and
- Meeting the inspiring and energetic IYH volunteers at Gorkha and learning about their experiences.
It was a fantastic trip which, for all of us reinforced the sense of excitement about IYH’s work - so much achieved, and still so much opportunity to do more. Spending time in the communities that we support is so important - we get to see first-hand what makes most difference, what works, what doesn’t work, what’s needed, and what’s hoped for.
As we travelled home we were all reflecting on new connections made, new insights gained, new ideas for what’s next….A very special time for all of us in the IYH family.
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