In January 2016, Dave Britten travelled to visit our colleagues in Nepal and to be updated on the progress of our valuable work there. Here, Dave gives a brief commentary of his mission.
Day 1 -
Day 2 -
Day 3 -
Day 4 -
Also visited the school with Kishor Adhikari and Santosh Bikram Adhikari. All of the classrooms were destroyed in the earthquake, fortunately it was not a school day. I presented books and pens to all of the children from Our Street Our Children. Met with the staff and asked what they need most. Firstly a new school! This is covered by Japanese aid, work started whilst I was there. Next they said a teacher! The government pay for five teachers, they have eight and they need ten. The shortfall is covered by generosity of local benefactors, but they have other things on their mind with their rebuilding. One teacher costs just £720 for a full year, if you are interested in helping contact me and I will put you in touch with them.
Dave is welcomed by Gita at the airport
The Garden of Dreams
Bus from Kathmandu to Phulkharka
Temporary classroom at Phulkharka
Day 5 -
Day 6 -
The long bus journey gives me time to reflect on the exceptional skills of Nepali bus drivers in Nepal, who cope with everything that nature throws at them in the mountains. Darwin would have been interested to see natural selection in action in Nepal's transport system. The bad bus drivers drive into ravines; the good ones go home to their wives to bring up a new generation of bus drivers. I have confidence in the ability of the bus drivers who have transported me over some very dodgy roads; nevertheless before I travel I always make a point of meeting the driver to check:
Day 7 -
Day 8 -
Bull fighting at Maghte Sankranti festival.
New teacher Prakash with new student Sushan.
Electric rickshaw in Narayangarh
Street children with donated hats and scarves at Lions Chowk, Narayangarh
Day 9 -
At Ashpokhari I was festooned with garlands and presented with a commemorative plaque. 2 years ago we had donated a computer to the school; the local education board was so impressed with their use of it that they donated 4 more, to give them a usable, and used, computer suite.
Day 10 -
Whilst in town a German tourist asked me for advice about the best hotel in Narayangarh; I put him on the bus to Sauraha in the National Park, 20 miles away. Much as we love Narayangarh, it isn't what you would call a tourist trap.
Day 11 -
Had an invite from one of the staff to visit his home. His wife does not approve of him drinking, so he took me to a bar where we polished off a bottle of vodka before we caught the bus. Don't think he got away with it, is there ever anything more obvious than a drunk trying to appear sober? Apparently yes; two drunks trying to appear sober.
Day 12 -
I then turn my hand to telecoms engineer to rewire Gita's phone line and reconfigure the router to fix the wi-
My body finally rebels after 21 consecutive meals of dhal bhaat; “I'm sorry sir, this is no longer a stopping service, express through service only, please take a seat!”
I like to buy the local (English language) papers to keep up to date. They have good reporting on cricket and the Premiership football, bizarrely supplied by a French news agency. Today there was an item about a 14 month old boy who was severely burned by a witch doctor to expel demons that had apparently possessed him. Evidence for the possession? Diarrhoea. Each time we come there seem to be stories of witchcraft. It's always sad to read stories like this, but for me it emphasises the need for education so the next generation can be better informed to make decisions.
Presentation of a commemorative plaque at Ashpokhari
Chameli Devi Piya Primary School
The official donation of the television
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