23rd Prabina Family Newsletter

Wir suchen Paten

Diese Kinder und Jugendlichen der Prabina Stiftung haben noch keine Paten

Janish

Jenish Shrestha

Samrat

Samrat Raya

Babita

Babita Shrestha

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Geschäftsleitung

Geschätzte Pateneltern, Geschätzte Spender, Gönner und Freunde der Prabina Stiftung

Ich freue mich sehr, Ihnen heute die 23. Ausgabe unseres Prabina-Newsletters zustellen zu dürfen. Die Situation in Nepal ist aktuell erneut sehr angespannt, das Land wurde hart von der 2. Covid-Welle erfasst, die über Indien ins Land hereingebrochen ist. Trotz alledem haben unsere Kinder und das Team in Nepal wieder mit viel Sorgfalt und Liebe einen Newsletter erstellt, um Ihnen auch in dieser schwierigen Zeit einen Einblick in das Leben vor Ort zu gewähren und um ihrer tiefen Dankbarkeit für Ihre kostbare Unterstützung Ausdruck zu verleihen.

Für einen Grossteil von Nepal’s Bevölkerung bedeutet die Pandemie zusätzlichen Kummer, Elend, noch mehr Leid als ohnehin schon. Inmitten dieser Tristesse setzen die Beiträge unserer Prabina-Kinder, die von viel Freude, Leben und Leuchten erfüllt sind, einen Hoffnungsschimmer. Nach vorne schauen – mit Zuversicht – das ist die Devise.

Gerne möchte ich Ihnen einen kurzen Überblick über die Situation der letzten Monate unter Covid-19 in Kathmandu geben: Nach der im Herbst 2020 verhängten Ausgangssperre und dem Lockdown hat sich in Nepal bis zum Jahreswechsel die Situation schrittweise in Richtung Normalbetrieb eingependelt, weil die meisten Menschen schlichtweg auf Dauer mit den Einschränkungen nicht ÜBERleben konnten. Gemäss Berichten unseres Teams vor Ort sahen die Strassen in Kathmandu ab Anfang 2021 wieder mehr oder weniger ‘normal’ aus hinsichtlich Tagesbetrieb. Ab Mitte Februar wurden dann auch die Schulen wieder für den Präsenzunterricht geöffnet, denn auch die Schulen sind existenziell von den Zahlungen des vollen Schuldgeldes abhängig.

Die Menschen versuchen, sich so gut wie möglich mit Masken und Hygienemassnahmen gegen das Virus zu schützen. Es versteht sich von selbst, dass diese Massnahmen vielerorts bedeutend anders aussehen als hier bei uns in der Schweiz, wo wir alle und jederzeit Zugang zu sauberem Wasser und Seife, Hygieneartikeln etc. haben. Der Gedanke daran lässt mich persönlich immer wieder aufs Neue Demut üben und Dankbarkeit empfinden.

Seit dem 29. April 2021 wurde aufgrund der 2. Covid-Welle wieder ein Lockdown verhängt, zunächst nur für 10 Tage. Da das Ausmass dieser 2. Welle verheerend ist, wird der Lockdown regelmässig weiter verlängert. Ein Ende ist im Moment nicht in Sicht. Unsere Kinder erhalten seitdem wieder online-Unterricht, sie stehen unter genauster Beobachtung betr. möglicher Symptome und werden regelmässig auf Covid-19 getestet. Bisher hat es glücklicherweise keinen Covid-Ausbruch im Prabina Haus gegeben. Beten wir, dass es auch weiterhin so bleibt.
Die Nahrungsmittel- sowie medizinische Versorgung für unsere Prabina Kinder sind weiterhin stabil und unbedenklich. Unser wunderbares Team vor Ort leistet unermüdlich grossartige Arbeit und die Kinder geben ihr Bestes, um die schwierige Situation auch von ihrer Seite mit zu unterstützen.

Ich wünsch Ihnen nun eine gute Lektüre. Herzlichen Dank für Ihre wertvolle Unterstützung und bleiben Sie bei bester Gesundheit!

Andrea Heinemann Geschäftsleiterin
Andrea

•••

Das Wort des Präsidenten

Liebe Pateneltern,
liebe Leserin, lieber Leser,

die Presseberichte über die Covid-Situation in Nepal sind erschreckend. Wenn man aber das Land und sein desolates Gesundheitssystem kennt, ist das nicht weiter verwunderlich. Umso mehr, dass Nepal wirtschaftlich äusserst abhängig von Indien ist und so die Pandemie bei aller Vorsicht auch importiert wird.

Im Prabina Haus verläuft der Betrieb den Umständen entsprechend «normal». Allen Kindern geht es gesundheitlich gut, ihre Freiheiten sind aber auch wegen der Pandemie stark eingeschränkt. Sie alle sind gesund, Prashant Shresta, der Geschäftsführer und sein Team, geben sich alle erdenkliche Mühe, dass die Kinder bei Laune und gesund bleiben, keine einfache Aufgabe. 

Aber im Grunde genommen wissen wir ja nicht, ob sich einzelne Kinder bereits angesteckt haben. Der Krankheitsverlauf bei ihnen ist sehr unterschiedlich, häufig zeigen sie gar keine Symptome.

Hilfe von hier aus ist nur beschränkt möglich, beten wir einfach, dass es so bleibt, gleich welcher Religion wir angehören!

Herzlichst, Ihr in dieser Situation etwas ratloser Präsident

Sepp Meier
Präsident

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Editorial

Humanitarian

The adversity of many people began after COVID-19. Developing countries like Nepal faced a huge problem espacially the population which are living under poverty line. Even the middle-class had to face adversity due to lack of basic needs and financial resources. Since all the industries and offices were closed due to lockdown in the country, people who used to earn had no way of generating any income. In worst case scenarios, the majority of the people here showed compassion by providing funds to people in desperate need to aid their recovery.

People who were affluent could afford to donate foods like rice, barley, salt etc., so that no one had to starve. Several local organizations even provided free food through food distribution programs in various locations where the ones who didn’t have money were hungry. Since the virus hit unexpectedly, many Nepalese were stuck abroad with embassies having a tough time bringing back Nepali residents. Likewise, our country also called back the diplomats that were living in other countries or were stuck in their touristic travels.

From several parts of the world helping hands arose although they themselves were struggling to manage their own economy – assisting with the provision of food to the people who are underprivileged. For example China also aided by providing free COVID testing kits during the beginning of the pandemic. Even after the discovery of the vaccine, our neighboring superpowers, China and India, have been providing us free vaccines for protecting our frontline workers. The vaccination is still ongoing as more and more vaccines are entering the country in order to vaccinate the elderly people aged above 65.

Most importantly, we have sufficient preexisting funds at Prabina Foundation to give the children and teenagers the same nurture as they received before the pandemic thanks to their godparents!
Everybody has been getting regular nutritious diets, education and a healthy lifestyle as well as proper housing because of the help of the donors. We are truly and deeply grateful.

It is still important to remember that the cases for COVID-19 are still active and the donors that have been helping us have been continuously nurturing hope and compassion to the rest of the world. People are living their lives in the presence of the virus by strictly following the safety protocols and precautions. We should feel lucky that such adversity could not harm any of us or the strong souls of the children among Prabina Family.

 

 

Prashant Shrestha

Coordinator
Prabina Foundation Nepal

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Vote of Thanks

I, Srijana K.C, deem it as an honor and privilege to represent a vote of thanks in
this 23rd edition of Prabina family newsletter.

Like every edition, I am sure everybody is waiting for this edition with excitement. This edition includes moments from reunions to celebration of festivals, expeditions and the aftermath of COVID19 pandemic.

On behalf of all Prabina children, I would like
to acknowledge our gratitude towards our
Godparents and Prabina family for their
divine and immense love and support. It
has always been a pleasure to be a part of
Prabina family. Hope you enjoy this edition
of our beautiful moments with warmth and
content.

Shrijana K.C.
PCL Nursing (3rd year)

NEWSLETTER TEAM
Edition 23 (April 2021)

PREPARED BY
Shrijana K.C.

SUPPORTED BY
Mohan Kumari Shrestha
Prabina Thapa Magar
Tracy Ale
Mukesh Poudel
Laxmi Shrestha
Anjali Thapa
Prashant Shrestha
Andrea Heinemann
Juan Ruiz
 

Anmerkung zum Inhalt unseres Newsletters

Alle Inhalte werden von unseren Prabina Jugendlichen verfasst. Ihre Beiträge – ihre Stimmen – repräsentieren die Essenz dessen, wofür unsere Stiftung steht. Um ihre Authentizität zu bewahren, belassen wir – die Geschäftsleitung – die Inhalte der Jugendlichen vollends im Original, editieren nichts und korrigieren auch keine Grammatik. Die Autorin oder der Autor des jeweiligen Artikels ist mit Namen und Foto vermerkt.

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Congratulations,
Course Completed

Amir3

Amir Rai
Diploma in Computer Engineering

Pusparaj

Pusparaj Bhandari
Diploma in Hotel Management

Sarada

Sarada Rai
Beautician Training

Barsha

Barsha Khadka
Grade 12 (Management)

•••

News

Dashain Reunion

17 October, 2020: Dashain is one of the auspicious festival of the people in Nepal.

Ghatasthapana, the first day of Dashain Festival, continues till Bijaya Dashami, the tenth day.

Following safety measures against Corona virus, all the current Prabina children including former students visited Prabina House to receive Jamara (barley sprouts) along with Dashain grant (money) on Ghatasthapana. This year Ghatasthapana event was modest yet memorable.

Sindhuli Visit

3 January 2021: Sindhuli District is one of the 77 District of Nepal and a part of Bagmati Province. It is 171Km away from Kathmandu and falls on the south east side. Prabina staff visited Nischal Khapangi Magar’s home in Sindhuli to admit a child in a new school since his family moved back to their village due to pandemic. After admission we provided him with facilities needed accordingly. Prabina staff contact the school and the family for updates on the child often.

Shopping

10 December, 2020: Prabina House boys and girls received warm trousers, sweatshirt and jackets for the approaching cold winter.

After the schools re-opening, school supplies were also provided to not only Prabina House children but education support as well.

Rautahat Visit

5 January, 2021: Rautahat District is one of the 77 districts of Nepal and is a part of Province 2. It is 231Km by road and its topography is mostly plains. Prabina Foundation has been supporting 4 children (3 females and 1 male) there.

However, our findings were unpleasant. In order to provide safety for our children, we brought 2 girls into Prabina House where they will be taken care for every second.

Staff Orientation

22 February, 2021: A staff orientation was organized in order to advise and expose our staff to the limitation and needs for a home to be safe for children. The rules and regulation were re-introduced and shared as per advised by the government agencies. This was a fruitful session as we as an organization need to be aware and follow the regulations for us to provide a better home for the needy.

Dream House Winners

24 February 2021: Prabina Foundation held a drawing contest where the children portrayed their dream house. Among all talented drawings, 5 children were chosen for their lovely concept for the dream house. The winners were congratulated and gifted with a wrist watch each.

Evaluation from Social Development Department (Kathmandu Metropolitan City)

8 November, 2020: In Nepal, various governmental agencies must visit social organizations for yearly license renewal. Likewise, five governmental staff from Social Development Department (Kathmandu Metropolitan City) visited Prabina Foundation and Homes for inspection and evaluation before yearly license renewal.

They had a meeting/ discussion on new intakes, documentation, health follow-ups along with medical reports and Prabina family re-integration process.

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Health session

Health signifies physical, mental and social well-being of an individual. In Prabina, we are concerned about the need for our childrens’ physical, psychological, social health and comfort to move forward with a positive and healthy mindset as they grow.

 

General Health Check-up for all Prabina children

19 December, 2020: Every year, Prabina Foundation Nepal organizes a general health checkup in Prabina House for all 36 (20 girls and 16 boys) Prabina children. Dr. Manjita Bajracharya, General Physician facilitated this session. Children if needed were prescribed medicines accordingly. This yearly check- up help make us aware of our children’s internal and external health status of their body.

30 January, 2021: This year Prabina Foundation Nepal organized a general health checkup for all our 42 (23 girls and 19 boys) education support children. Majority of the children were fit and only some were prescribed medication for seasonal flu.

Srijana’s Follow-up

18 December, 2020: Prabina House staff took Srijana Khapangi Magar to clean her wounds in her head due to Darier disease and follow up with medicines. The doctors showed her steps to clean her wound every day.

Junior Counselling

9 – 23 January, 2021: Prabina Foundation Nepal organized a counselling session facilitated by Kripa Acharya, Psycho-therapist. All junior children were counselled on good and bad touch, lying and violence. These sessions were put forward through fun activities and stories which created a safe space for our children to express themselves freely and build up confidence.

Senior Counselling

30 – 27 January, 2021: After a successful counselling group session with the juniors. Senior children aged 15 and above also had a group counselling session. This session helped them understand about biological and behavioral changes according to different age group, boundaries gender inequality, sex education and love.

Dental Check-up

6th February, 2021: All Prabina House children (22 girls and 14 boys) got their teeth, gums and mouth examined. Thankfully no major problems were discovered and the children also put forward their queries and concerns. The children also learnt cleaning habits which they follow day to day.

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Congratulations

Grade 12 completed

Completed_Barsha

Barsha Khadka
GPA 3.44

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Festivals

TIHAR- Celebrating Life and Light

Tihar is widely celebrated by Hindus all around the world. This festival usually falls on the Nepali month of Kartik (October-November) but after 12 years it fell on the month of Mangsir (November-December) this year in 2020. This five-day festival represents the positive gratitude that is shown towards crows, dogs, cows, ox, Goddess Laxmi and our siblings.

13 November 2020- Kaag (Crow) Tihar: First day of Tihar is called Kaag Tihar. In Hindu culture, crows are believed to be the messenger of the God of Death- Yamaraj. Since the cawing of the crows are considered an omen. On this day, devotees lay out varieties of grains and sweets on the roof or on the streets for the crows to consume in hopes of keeping away sadness and grief for the coming year.

In Prabina House, we laid out varieties of food on the terrace for the crows. Watching the crows consume the food that we laid out gave us a hearty feeling.

14 November 2020- Kukur (Dog) Tihar: Second day is Kukur Tihar. Dogs are not only our loyal friend but also believed to be the guardian of the God of Death, so this day is spent by honoring dogs all over Nepal. Devotees put tika, garland and feed delicious treats to their dogs and people who do not own a dog worship the dogs on the streets.

On this day, we too from Prabina House got to put tika on the neighbor’s dog. The dog ate the food that we gave in the blink of an eye!

15 November 2020- Gai (Cow) Tihar and Laxmi puja: Third day which is Gai Tihar and Laxmi Puja are considered the most important day during Tihar. Gai, also known as cow, it is the most sacred animal. They are also believed to be the mount of Goddess Laxmi: goddess of wealth and purity. In the morning cows are worshipped with tika, garland and also fed varieties of treats. Laxmi Puja is usually celebrated in the evening. It is believed that Goddess Laxmi does not visit dark houses so we put diyos (traditional oil lamps) specially at the entrance of the doorway and drape our house with colorful electric lights. Then, a puja is carried out for Goddess Laxmi wishing for wealth, prosperity and good health.

In Prabina House, during the day we first made selroti (traditional ring shaped rice bread) and puri (deep fried bread made of whole wheat flour). In the evening, we made a rangoli (art design made of colorful powder) in the front of Prabina House gate and lit our house with diyos. From the terrace we could see beautiful lights on every houses and the area looked picturesque.

 

16 November 2020- Bhai (Brother) Tika: The last day is Bhai (brother) tika. On this day sisters bless their younger or elder brothers marking their special bond. According to the legend, when Goddess Yamuna’s brother fell ill and was in his death bed, the God of death “Yama” came to take his soul. Yamuna pleaded Yama to wait until she finished performing rituals to her brother and not to take away her brother until the tika on his forehead fades away, the water she had sprinkled dries and the marigold garlands she had put around his neck withers away.

We always celebrate bhai tika in Prabina House. This year due to Corona virus we were altogether 16 brothers. Our sisters from Prabina House worshipped diyo batti (small traditional oil lamp), kalash (metal pitcher pot) and walnut before putting tika. They made three rounds around us with water and oil which is believed to protect us from our enemies.

As the tradition follows, they then applied mustard oil in our heads and ears to protect us from upcoming winter. They perform the ritual with a seven colored (red, pink, blue, yellow, orange, green and white) tika and give us bhai masala (mixture of cashew, almond, raisin, walnut, chocolate in a packet). They fed us yoghurt and crushed the walnuts thinking they were our enemies.
In the end, we also put seven colored tika on their forehead and gave them gift. I feel fortunate and proud for getting to celebrate this amazing festival with my Prabina family which has been followed for generations.

Sarbajit Tamang
Class-10

Sarbajit

A Holy, Jolly Day

24 December 2020: Christmas, which falls on 25 December every year, is an annual festival which is celebrated widely all over the world according to their own special traditions. The main focus is on celebrating with friends and family, exchanging gifts and indulging in good food. In Nepal, Christmas was marked as a public holiday by the government in 2063 B.S. (2006). Since then, regardless of religion, Nepalese also tend to celebrate Christmas with gatherings at home or church, singing carols hosting parties.

It was my first Christmas in Prabina House. All the children had prepared a special edition program for this year’s celebration. In the morning, all children we wished each other “Merry Christmas” and followed our schedule for the day. Then in the afternoon, we gathered around and started to decorate the program hall with Christmas tree, balloons, lights, and ornaments. Everyone in the Prabina House was really excited because we got to decorate our first Christmas tree ever. Decorating for Christmas was so much fun. All the staff and children gathered around, and we started the program around 5pm.

First, we all sang Jingle bells together. Then, I danced with my friends. The younger Prabina sisters danced with pompoms in their hand- it was so cute! Then we wrote our wishes and stuck them on the wishing cloud and exchanged gifts. We also gave away self-made cards for all Prabina staff and they looked so amused and happy while receiving it. My favorite part of the program was the wishing cloud because all Prabina staff and children wrote their wishes and stuck them on the chart paper. Later on we got to hear everybody’s beautiful wishes. The program was enjoyable, funny at times and also emotional. This opportunity to host and perform was a wonderful moment to give back our love to Prabina Foundation.

Our beautiful day ended after a very yummy dinner. This day was truly a memorable moment for me and I am sure for all Prabina children too. I hope all enjoyed the program and I would like to participate more in upcoming celebrations with my fellow Prabina friends, brothers and sisters.

Ankita Khatiwada
Class 6

Ankita

Festival of Blessings

17 – 27 October, 2020: Dashain, also known as Bada Dashain, is the longest and the most auspicious festival in the Nepalese annual calendar. It is celebrated by most Nepalese throughout the country. It is generally celebrated for 15 days and the 10th day is the most important day which is also known as Bijaya Dashami.

During Dashain, our online classes were on hold because all the Nepalese people that live in the cities go to their ancestral home to celebrate with their family. Due to COVID-19, nobody went home from Prabina House, but the atmosphere was merry since all the Prabina House children were together. We were overjoyed because we got new dresses and played cards together. On the tenth day we put Tika (rice mixed with red color powder and yogurt) and Jamara (a grass that emerges from barley seeds) from Prashant brother and our caretaker aunties. They gave us blessing for our future. We all gathered around to eat delicious food like paneer, chicken, mushroom, cold drinks, etc.

In this 2 weeks’ holiday, I learnt many good things like helping, sharing, caring for one another and celebrating our unbroken culture. This was my first experience celebrating Dashain with all children in Prabina House and it was indeed a delightful moment.

I am thrilled for getting this opportunity to share my experience. Even with the pandemic causing a global terror, we all celebrated this year’s Dashain joyfully and especially together.

Gyanu Tamata
Grade 10

Gyanu

Maghe Sakranti

14 January, 2021: Maghe Sankranti is celebrated on the first day of the Nepali month Magh (around mid-January). This day marks the end of the cold winter and welcomes the long summer days. According to Hindu culture, devotees perform puja to worship Lord Vishnu: the preserver and the protector of the universe throughout the whole one month. The Tharu community celebrates this day as their New Year in the Terai region. They celebrate it for a week with great joy.

We also celebrated Maghe Sankranti in Prabina House. We received tika and blessings from our caretaker aunty and then ate Chakku (a candy made from concentrated sugarcane, jaggery, ghee and nuts), Tarul (yam), Pidalu (taro), Sakarkhanda (sweet potato), etc. which are a must to eat on this day. After our dinner, all the children gathered around to hear the story behind this festival. This helped us to learn and know more about this festival. Then we played fun group games. I celebrated this festival for the first time in Prabina House and I will always cherish this moment.

Santoshi Gautam
Class 2

Santoshi

Creative Learning

Our children are continuously provided with sessions which helps them build their interpersonal skills. These sessions give them exposure to different social topics and knowledgeable information. Prabina children have been enjoying Ms. Mamata Gurung’s lifeskill sessions since the COVID lockdown.

Timeline activity: This was a timeline activity where children made a map of their life from birth till date. All the children made a map where they marked their bittersweet moment to a moment where they felt blessed and will never forget. This activity helped the children to look forward to their future with a positive mindset.

Community we live in/ Society: Everyone should learn to live in peace and harmony. In this session children learned about community and ways of living co-operatively with their surrounding. Children had a project work, where they showed their drawings and also designs on a cardboard portraying community and surroundings.

Learning history through visits: In this session, children got to learn about a place named Taudaha (visited a week before). They were shown a short video about the pond’s history and it significance.

Tihar and its specifics: Children were divided into 5 groups with 7 members in each group to discuss and make a presentation about Tihar and their specific days. Every group had a topic according to the festival day. The children made drawings and explained about each day according our cultural aspect and presented their work. This session helped the children in team work but also about their festival and culture together in a fun way.

Journal writing: Writing can be both formal, informal, creative or personal. Journal writing helped the children to depict their thoughts, ideas, poems, records, etc. It was something new and exciting for them which they can start at an early age.

Quiz day with movie: Children were asked many questions related to our course book, martyrs, about our country’s related questions. It was an interactive session. After the quiz, children watched a movie which taught them to help poor and needy.

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Wall of Gratitude

Your support as sponsors and friends of Prabina Foundation – as Prabina Family members, has made a huge difference for our children, teenagers and their families, as well as for our Prabina Alumni… which they wish to express to you in their own words on this Wall of Gratitude:

Alisha

I am extremely grateful towards Prabina Foundation and my Godparents for providing help during the difficult phase of lockdown.

Alisha Karki
Bachelor in Social Work

 

Jenish

I feel happy and relieved to have been supported through this pandemic. Me and my family are grateful for your contribution.

Jenish Shrestha
Class 3

 

Shital

Like every other individual, me and my mother faced economic crisis during pandemic and were in dire need of any form of assistance. Your prompt support has helped us cope this adverse situation. I heartily thank Prabina Foundation for the compassionate support.

Shital Karki
Bachelor in Social Work

 

Anita

I feel grateful to be a part of Prabina Foundation where every child is looked after and cared for. Me and my family were relieved when we were provided with hot meals every day during the pandemic, which was scaring the world. This effort is highly appreciated by us. Thank you!

Anita Lai Magar
Class 5

 

Alka

Prabina Foundation has shown nothing but kindness towards me. Even during the pandemic, I reached out for help and they were ready to help me with a smile on their face. Thank you!

Alka Shrestha
Alumni

Nil

Thank you my Godparents and Prabina Family for your hard work and love even during lockdown.

Nil Bahadur Karki
Class 5

Raj

Being in Prabina Family has given me nothing but joy. During the pandemic, Prabina staff contacted me and asked me about my living status and difficulty I was facing. I received financial aid which helped me immensely during the pandemic. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Raj Lama
Alumni

Rashmi

During the crisis because of lockdown, we were struggling financially to feed our family. Me and my family were provided with cooked meals 3 times a day for which I am very grateful for towards Prabina Foundation’s team (Switzerland and Nepal).

Rashmi Pandey
PCL Nursing

Pushparaj

The worst scenario is facing financial crisis and not being able to ease hunger. Covid-19 pandemic hit worldwide and lockdown obstructed income for everybody. With your generous and quick aid, me and my family didn’t suffer much because you bought us stock of food which lasted us long time. My family and I would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your support in every possible way.

Pushparaj Bhandari
Diploma in Tourism and Hotel Management

Bipisha

It was a difficult time. Every school/ college was closed along with people being out of work. Slowly, shortage of food was increasing but my mother and me felt blessed to have Prabina Foundation who helped us. Not only was the help financial, but they contacted us frequently with concern for our wellbeing as well.

Bipisha Parajuli
Grade 11, Management

Namrata

We really had a tough time when everything was closed, and we running out of basic necessities at home and with financial instability to buy. One day, I received financial aid and that is when I took a sigh of relief. I would like to thank every member treating us like family and helping us in critical situation. Blessed are we for being part of Prabina.

Namrata Dahal
Bachelor in Business Studies

Barsha

People were not only dying of the virus but also of hunger and economic crisis was on the rise. It was a frightful time but during the pandemic, Prabina Foundation provided us groceries that lasted us throughout lockdown. This pandemic has shown me who really cares for us by heart. I would like thank you all Prabina Family in Nepal and in Switzerland for your immense love.

Barsha Khadka
Grade 12, Management

Course of Life

Sunita Gajurel

Class 10

“Every dawn brings a new hope. ”

Sunita

Unfortunate childhood
I was born in Nuwakot district- a hilly region which is around 75km away from Kathmandu valley. Since it is a hilly district, there are less plains and most of the areas are still underdeveloped. Nuwakot district has many historical significance and is also known as “city of nine hills”. My family consisted of five members’- my mother, father, elder sister, elder brother, and me. My mother and father were farmers by profession and thus, worked in other’s land to earn our living. Me and my brother and sister all were attending a government school nearby. However, my mother disliked my elder sister and me because she thought we were a burden to her just because we were born as a girl. She used to throw utensils at us for no reason and hit us with sticks which were traumatic for us. That sound of incessant beating and our cries still gives me shivers!

Sunita2

Sunita in 2012 before entering Prabina House

A ray of light
In the year 2012, one of the Prabina staff shared my picture and story to Mrs. Mohan Kumari Shrestha. Then after few months, I was called in Prabina Foundation where they briefed me regarding Prabina House which will be my new home along with other children. Everything was new for me as I received new clothes, nutritious food, and a secure place to live. I felt content and rewarded for the struggle I had been through.

My Education
I was 9 years old and just studying in grade 2, I was fortunate for getting to study. I was getting good grades but I was still struggling in English. Since it was a new language for me, I found it difficult to understand. I worked hard for it because I knew I could do better. Now, I am in grade 10 at Nepal Mega School and I am proud of where I have reached.

Life in Prabina House
Prabina House has been a heaven for me and for my peers as well. I have now lived here for nine years and I feel elated to be residing here with such wonderful faculty and friends that I have always considered family. Here, not only do I get to study and reside, but I also get to go for excursions, celebrate festivals, play games, watch movies, participate in extra curriculars and most of all sleep safely knowing that I have been fortunate enough to get this opportunity. Sessions and life skill trainings are also provided to us in order to build our interpersonal skills for a safer and stable future. Overall, the past nine years in Prabina house has given me a chance to positively build myself as a person that is fit enough to engrave with today’s competitive society.

My career
Career counselling is provided to children every year. We are introduced to multiple career options that best suits our interest and abilities. So far, I am interested in the health sector but have not decided the exact path.

My sincere gratitude
My gratitude towards Prabina Foundation will never fade away because I was given a new life at the time where I felt like I lost everything. Thank you Marine and Martin Haefner for supporting me from a young age, which all my relatives failed to do. Thank you.

Prithvi Giri

Class 9

“Finding opportunities in darkness, will lead to success.”

Prithvi

Rejected childhood
I was born on April 2006 in Thapathali, Kathmandu. Usually, being born as a son is well cherished in our society but it was opposite when I was born. My father who is a policeman came to see me only after a month of my birth. On seeing me he said – “he isn’t my son!” He claimed to have another son in his village whom he loved dearly. Since my mother is an orphan, she was devastated and hopeless hearing such vile words from her husband and only guardian. Unable to control her pain, she tried to attempt suicide assuming that I will be raised in an orphanage.

Just after giving birth to me, my mother started working to feed us. My father did not support us at all. He only visited us to rob my mother’s hard-earned money without leaving any penny. He stopped visiting us just after looting all my mother’s jewelry and precious belongings.

Prithvi

Prithivi’s first visit at Prabina Foundation in 2015

Rigorous failure
There was no one to help my mother emotionally and financially because my father never introduced her to his family. After lots of struggle, my mother finally found my father residence in a village in Dang. Without thinking further, she decided to go to her in-laws house, being unaware of what lied ahead. Unfortunately, my mother found out about my father’s second wife who had been living there happily. Again, she became hopeless and agonized. However, we stayed at our father’s house facing verbal tortures of my grandfather. Mother used to do all kind of chores all day. She used to suffer from intense pain because of her uterus problem as she worked immediately after giving birth to me. Even after all those hard works done by my mother, they decided to throw all our belongings away and disowned me as well.

After that, my mother was in agony but was hopeful about my future. She used to think that I will be self-sufficient and independent in future who will be taking care of her. So, she continued working hard in the hope of our bright future and I also used to help her emotionally by giving her courage.

Though her income was exceptionally low, my mother somehow managed to send me to school. I performed astounding while studying in grade one. Unfortunately, I had to drop out because of our financial crisis. If I had continued studying, we would not be able to eat.

A magical turnover
In 2015, my mother heard about Prabina Foundation and decided to go there to ask for help. The next day, social workers of Prabina Foundation visited our house and observed the way we were living. Fortunately, they agreed to support my education. My mother and I were elated and thought we were very lucky to receive the support when we were in our worst condition.

Opportunities in Prabina
Prabina Foundation always organizes programs in order to educate us through recreation activities. I will never forget my wall climbing experience which helped me to overcome acrophobia. I always actively participate in each program organized by the organization which has helped me to build my confidence. I feel fortunate to be part of the Prabina Foundation and now, it is my second home.

Token of thanks
Though I had a rough childhood, I am trying to forget all those adversities to live the present fully. I am so grateful to receive the support received from Prabina Foundation Nepal and from my wonderful Godparents- Chris and Jack “you are wonderful”. Your love and guidance fabricate me more to study well. Thank you!

•••

Voice of Prabina

Temple visit and picnic

6 March, 2021: Living in a multicultural country, we are blessed with not only beautiful Himalayan ranges but also temples for deities. The Covid-19 pandemic made us all feel the need to be out and travel. Prabina Foundation organized a visit to Dakshinkali temple, Taudaha and picnic and dry picnic at Chobar.

As the van started, we started singing. I was looking outside enjoying the view, which was amazing. On the way, I saw a big statue of Buddha and Sashnath temple. After an hour of travel, we arrived at Dakshinkali Temple (22Km away), I was shocked to see people standing in a long queue to worship the Goddess holding a hen. People were taking pictures as well. We then sat down to put tika on our forehead from the priests who were reading scriptures beside the temple. While putting tika I felt blessed and peaceful. Then we walked up the stairs to worship the mother of Dakshinkali. We climbed 206 steps and walked by many shops selling foods, clicking pictures and also selling puja materials. There were lots and lots of bells and small statues of gods besides the stone steps. While reaching the top, I felt cool breeze blowing and everything looked small down below.

We returned to the van and went to a place called Taudaha (11.3km away). Taudaha is a beautiful pond which once was a part of a big lake. There were fish, ducks, tortoise, snakes and dead fishes were floating as well! The fish were in different colors like silver, golden, orange, black, white and some were really big. The view was pleasant. There were a lot of people enjoying looking at the pond and also feeding the fish. After an hour, we headed to Chovar (11Km) for picnic. There we had snacks and afterwards started to play games. Later, we played music and started dancing. I really had fun. Then sadly, it was getting cloudy and thus, we headed back home.

Apsara Lai Magar 
Class 7

Apsara

Repercussions of COVID 19 in Nepal

SARS-CoV-2 is corona virus 2019 (COVID-19), which rapidly became a global pandemic. WHO and the global community have been working continuously to contain this virus. Since 1 June 2020, Nepal has detected more than 200 cases per day consecutively. The number of infections has doubled on average in 10 days. The government of Nepal has been working on minimize the spread and effect of the disease to prevent the infection from spreading. The government implemented the closure and lockdown of the whole nation. Early identification contact tracing and isolation of suspicious person were the best possible way to stop the virus from spreading.

This worldwide pandemic impacted many different fields. Some of the key sectors are as follows:

Unemployment
Daily wage workers were losing job and companies were shutting down, education system was unmanaged, the unity and belongings of society, the agriculture of the region, or let’s say, the world’s daily activities were all on hold. This led to people trying to survive and feed the family and burglary was on the rise. Even, Nepali migrant workers were sent back home. People are still unemployed and looking for any job possible.

Tourism
Tourism sector plays effective role for the economic development of Nepal. Back in 2019, Nepal welcomed a whole lot of mountain climbers, which led to human traffic while climbing the mountain- that’s how busy it was! With the pandemic, the climbing has stopped which affected the guides (the Sherpa), the porters, and the gear shops that provide climbing materials to manufacturers. Some of the shops have closed down for an unpredictable timeline.

Mental stability
With everything happening around, people were inside 24/7 and working from home was mentally challenging. It was affecting individuals mentally, physically and socially. People longed for some self-time and this led to depression, panic attacks, personality disorder or post-traumatic disorder.

Domestic violence
Where we all thought staying home was safe, it actually turned out to be the total opposite. As per record, 604 cases (violence, rape, suicide, physical assault, etc.) were reported within the 2-month lockdown period. There may be 100s more which has not been reported just for the fact of the social impact it can have on the family.

Finally, the first phase of COVID-19 vaccine has been completed in February 2021 where all the front-line workers and facility-based individuals were vaccinated. From April 2021, the second phase of vaccination will reach out to the elderly people starting from above 55 years of age and then gradually everybody is hoping to get vaccinated. But the vaccine does not work 100% and thus, slowing the transmission of COVID-19 will require the participation of every member of the community to follow safety protocols. Misleading, ambiguous and false information can lead to serious negative public health consequences.

Hoping everything will go well by the end of 2021.

Our payment dues in the grocery shop was piling up. Prabina staff communicated with me frequently regarding my health and my situation, though having poor mobile network reception. Being aware of our helpless situation, Prabina Foundation transferred me some financial aid in my neighbor’s bank account (as none of my family members have a bank account). As I live in a rural hilly region, financial institutions are centralized in the district headquarter, Charikot, which is far away from my village. During lockdown, these financial institutions were open on specific days and time. It took me 7 days to receive the money through my neighbour.

After receiving the money, we paid the previous dues and bought enough essential groceries. My mother bought vegetable seeds for growing in our small land. I was still at my village when my school had already conducted online classes. I was upset because I was evading my online classes. None of my family members own a smartphone to attend online classes. Soon after long distance transportation started since 17th September, I traveled back to Kathmandu.

I was tested negative for COVID-19 PCR test and returned back to Prabina House on 21 September, 2020. I was relieved! Now, I am attending my online classes regularly.

Namrata Dahal
Bachelors in business studies,
4th year

Namrata

Hike to a Historical Hill

22 January, 2020: Every year, schools and colleges plan out expeditions or a day out program for educational and refreshment purpose. Likewise, my college organized a hiking program provided with safety measures.

We had our breakfast and started our hike. After 3 hours of uphill hike, we reached Switzerland park-a beautiful hill surrounded by greeneries all around. It is a famous picnic destination among the people living in Kathmandu. We had lunch there enjoying the nature’s beauty. After lunch, we then walked towards our destination- Kaji Kalu Pandey burial ground and memorial park in Indradaha, Chandragiri Municipality. It is around 13.9km on the western outskirts of Kathmandu. This place holds a historical significance as Kaji Kalu Pandey: the great warrior and commander of the Gorkha forces, was buried here. During the era of Nepal Unification campaign launched by Prithivi Narayan Shah, Kaji Kalu Pandey was killed in the first battle in Kirtipur in 1757. Historical tales believe that his head was buried on the top of the hill obeying his last wish. He wanted to be buried on a top of a hill where Gorkha can be seen. There was a statue of Kaji Kalu Pandey painted in golden and the burial ground was made of stone.

From the hill, Mount Manaslu, Langtang, Yangra Peak could be seen, but sadly, the weather was not clear. The park was really beautiful and peaceful. I am sure without the fog the scenery would have been mesmerizing! I heard that around the month of March the hill is filled with Rhododendron (our national flower). There were historical monuments along the way but they still had to be reconstructed due to the 2015 devastating earthquake.

Even though I had never heard about this place before, it was a truly pleasant educational endeavor. We could reminisce about a great ancient warrior who played an important role in the journey of uniting Nepal as one. This hike with picnic was a much-needed break from the dirt and all the noise in Kathmandu Valley as well. I made such a good memory with my new friends and teachers.

Dhana Kumari Magar
Class 11, Humanities

Dhana2

Computer Class

14 January 2021: Computer is one of the best creations of science and technology. Computer has not only made our lives easier but also provides us with numerous knowledges in just a click. This has become a very important part of our daily life Prabina Foundation Nepal has been organizing computer class every Saturday from 10:00 AM to 12:15 PM from January 2021 This computer class is organized to provide basic computer knowledge to the children from grade 11 and upwards. Amir Rai, an ex-student facilitates this class. In this class, I got a chance to learn about the basics of computer. Usually after class 10, we barely care to use our school’s computer lab and in some years, we forget how to use a computer except for turning off and on! Amir brother taught us the easiest and effective way of all the basic computer applications. He introduced and showed us the live function of MS Word, MS Excel and ways to prepare presentation through PowerPoint. He gave us practical assignments, which gave us more practice. This class helped me build my public speaking skills and my confidence through the presentations in PowerPoint.

Recently, my college gave me an assignment where I had to prepare and present to my classmates on a certain topic. I prepared my topic by working on Microsoft word, excel and presenting through PowerPoint. My teacher was impressed with me. I am grateful towards Prabina Foundation Nepal for organizing this class because this is what we need for our future. This computer class is still going on and I am regularly attending the class. I am hoping to be perfect in using computer applications in upcoming days.

Rudra Bahadur Bhandari
Class 11, Management

Rudra

Hiking to Pilot Baba Ashram

24 February 2021: After lockdown was lifted, schools slowly re-opened. I would go to school and home back and forth. I just wanted to go out for a day and enjoy. One day, I received a call from Prabina Foundation and said that we will be going for hiking. I could not believe what I heard and was jumping with joy.

Our hiking destination was Pilot Baba ashram (spiritual retreats or meditation centre) which is in Suryabinayak, Bhaktapur. We first went to Doleshwor Mahadev temple and worshipped the god. There were construction going around the temple area. Then we had breakfast and started our 2-hour uphill hike to Pilot baba ashram. We followed the road going uphill. Thankfully, it was less sunny and the weather was cool. It took us time because it was an uphill hike. On the way people were driving and riding bikes so some places were dusty due to unmanaged road.
After reaching the top, cold breeze blowing made me feel refreshed. The ashram was neat but there were a lot of people visiting the place.

After a good view and resting our strong beating heart, we had lunch and returned by van since it was getting late. After I came back home, I was curious and looked up online to know more about Pilot baba. I found that his real name was Kapil Singh. He was born in India and served as a fighter pilot in the Indian Air Force in 1957. He retired at the age of 33 and started his spiritual journey for peace. His followers made ashrams all over India and other countries too.

I enjoyed every minute of my hiking. Not only did I visit the place but also learned a lot about it. All historical places are not mentioned in books and some have to be seen and learnt by self. I am blessed enough for being able to participate in this educational venture.

Sonisha Tamang
Class 9

Sonisha

Hiking to Pilot Baba Ashram

24 February 2021: After lockdown was lifted, schools slowly re-opened. I would go to school and home back and forth. I just wanted to go out for a day and enjoy. One day, I received a call from Prabina Foundation and said that we will be going for hiking. I could not believe what I heard and was jumping with joy.

Our hiking destination was Pilot Baba ashram (spiritual retreats or meditation centre) which is in Suryabinayak, Bhaktapur. We first went to Doleshwor Mahadev temple and worshipped the god. There were construction going around the temple area. Then we had breakfast and started our 2-hour uphill hike to Pilot baba ashram. We followed the road going uphill. Thankfully, it was less sunny and the weather was cool. It took us time because it was an uphill hike. On the way people were driving and riding bikes so some places were dusty due to unmanaged road.
After reaching the top, cold breeze blowing made me feel refreshed. The ashram was neat but there were a lot of people visiting the place.

After a good view and resting our strong beating heart, we had lunch and returned by van since it was getting late. After I came back home, I was curious and looked up online to know more about Pilot baba. I found that his real name was Kapil Singh. He was born in India and served as a fighter pilot in the Indian Air Force in 1957. He retired at the age of 33 and started his spiritual journey for peace. His followers made ashrams all over India and other countries too.

I enjoyed every minute of my hiking. Not only did I visit the place but also learned a lot about it. All historical places are not mentioned in books and some have to be seen and learnt by self. I am blessed enough for being able to participate in this educational venture.

Sonisha Tamang
Class 9

Sonisha

A Day in Nature

19 February 2021: Hiking is a physically challenging extra-curricular activity in which a group of individuals’ travels to a certain distance by walking with the required equipment. Every year, our school takes us to new locations for hiking.

This year, our destination was Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park- the mid-hill park on the northern side of Kathmandu and is 2732m above sea level. This park was established as a protected watershed and wildlife reserve in 1976 A.D. We were pre-informed about the things needed and precautionary measures to be undertaken. Early morning, all the students gathered in school and we left via school bus. After an hour, we arrived in Budanilkantha, where we started our hike. I was energetic and was very excited for the hike. On the way, the evergreen scenery thrilled me!
Starting of the route was plain so, I walked without any difficulty. After an hour of walking, I started to feel exhausted. The journey was not easy as I thought it would be, especially when the stoned steps uphill started. I was hoping to see some animals but sadly, I barely came across any. However, I got to see beautiful streams. The greenery and just the sound of the winds blowing through the trees were soothing. We then reached the starting point of Bagmati river, where we had our lunch and clicked pictures. Then, we continued our journey. The climate was not sunny and hence favoring us.

From the hills we could barely the Himalayas because of the cloudy weather. Around 2:00 PM, we again halted for snacks and started to head back to Budanilkantha. Slowly, the sun started to hide behind the clouds and it started getting dark. We were in the middle of the jungle, when suddenly, it started raining. We were separated in different groups to rest and also wait for the rain to subside. Many of us were drenched because we had no umbrella since it was not a rainy season. When the rain stopped, we continued to move ahead towards our end point. The return to our bus station was a bit of a struggle and then our school bus dropped us back home.

“Nature does not need people but people need nature” is what I saw on the way into the jungle and it felt veracious. I was tired but content at the same time. I made great memories! I am sure not only me but my friends as well were pressured with S.E.E. (class 10 examination) coming up; but this hiking was definitely refreshing. I took this hiking as an opportunity to enjoy with my friends because we may not be together after S.E.E.

Sushmita Khatri
Class 10

Sushmita

•••

Alumni Success Story

Rajesh Magar, a boy originally from a small village in Sunsari district, received education support from Prabina Foundation Nepal from April 2012 in grade 8. Later he completed his 3-year Diploma in Civil Engineering through which he flourished and got a government job as an Assistant Sub-Engineer. Once a determined child is now an independent man. A proud asset to Prabina Foundation, indeed.

Your early years?
My family and I migrated from Sunsari District to Kathmandu for a better life. We lived near the river banks in the slums in Kathmandu. Being born in a poor family made life more difficult than it already was. My family had to struggle very hard to manage daily meals.

I am originally from Sunsari District (349.5 km away from Kathmandu valley). My grandparents hated my father for marrying a woman of his choice. They would quarrel every day and eventually we were thrown out of our village home. Then we migrated to Kathmandu in hopes of finding a stable job to feed ourselves. My father had a cousin sister in Kathmandu who helped us find a small steel plated room for us to live near the riverbanks (slum area) in Kathmandu. Then my father started looking around for jobs and started working as a labor. He was also collecting money to go abroad. Later, he found that his agent had run away with his money. Then slowly, my father started to adopt drinking habit. Every day he would drink and come home and hit my mother and me. He did not buy even the needed groceries which made my family struggle very hard to manage daily meals.

Later, my sister was born but still my father never stopped drinking and being abusive. He cared more about his drinking and less about our education. However, my mother was my strength she always believed in educating us even though she herself is not educated.

What do you miss about your childhood?
The main thing which I miss about my childhood is carefreeness. When I was a kid I didn’t have to worry much whether it be food or money and I had more time to play with my friends. It was a different world!

What was the miracle that happened to you which has helped you become the person you are today?
I was already fortunate for getting to study in Koseli School which provides free education to underprivileged children until class 7. Since I could only study till class 7 in that school I was wondering if I would be able to continue my studies or not. Then, Renu Mam from Koseli school referred me to Prabina Foundation. So, the miracle happened when Prabina Foundation took me in and supported me for my further studies which has helped me to become the person I am today. If not then, I would have to unwillingly give up my education.

Your education?
I always wanted to study but my parents could not afford my education fees. Thankfully, there was Koseli School providing free education where I got to read and write till class 7.

Being a diligent student, I got the opportunity to study further with the help from Prabina Foundation. I completed my class 10 from Himali Boarding school. Then I applied for Diploma in Civil Engineering which is a 3 years course and successfully completed it in 2019. I never took my education for granted because I knew, one day it will lead me to a better future and now; I am working as a sub-engineer.

Your career?
After completing my Diploma, I applied for Lok Sewa (an organization recruiting eligible candidates for government jobs). The process was strenuous as I had sleepless night while preparing for the examination. I gave exams and interviews and thus in 2020, I got the job outnumbering thousands of candidates.

Now I am currently working as an assistant sub-engineer at a government office located in Tanahun District (222km away from Kathmandu Valley). I am working in the field for one of the development projects of Nepal. I have always believed that this career as an engineer will help me to achieve my dreams for my better future. I feel like my professional journey has just begun and I have a long way to go.

Your best years of life and worst years?
I was in class 7 and the year was coming to an end. I was hopeless and panicked because my parents could not afford for my further education. I still remember the summer of 2012, when I got accepted by Prabina Foundation. Thus, making it the beginning of the best years of my life.

Worst years of my life would be my childhood when I had to stay hungry and also get physically abused by my drunkard father.

 

“Never outrun your sorrow, learn to define and overcome it.”

 

Define yourself in 3 words.
Friendly, hardworking and determined.

What difference in Prabina Foundation have you found during your days and today?
1. More underprivileged children are getting opportunity to study.
2. Boy’s home has been established.

How do you feel about being a sub-engineer and representing a government organization?
I feel very happy and proud being appointed as a sub-engineer for a government office at such a young age. I feel very blessed to have an opportunity to serve the nation’s development process.

How do you feel about being independent?
Being independent has made me more confident which makes me feel like I can achieve more in my life.

Your strength?
My strength is my mother and my fighting spirit of never giving up. Without them, I would not have been where I am today.

Your future plans?
Now that I have started earning, I can work and study at the same time. I want to enhance my education level as well as reach to higher position of my career. My road to learning is never ending.

Your message to Prabina children?
My message to Prabina Children is God has gifted us second life by giving the opportunity to study through Prabina Foundation. Don’t waste this opportunity and make it count. Always remember your family background and your goal. Don’t ever deviate your mind from your life goal. Keep working hard, never give up and be very focused and determined. I hope you all succeed in your life!

Last few words
I sincerely would like to thank my beloved Godmother- Annalisa Altorfer and Prabina Foundation for supporting me in my educational endeavor. My thank you will never be enough to cover for the overwhelming support they have shown towards me. Thank you for everything!

•••

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