Rural Assistance Nepal
Rural Assistance Nepal (RAN) was set up to help advance education and to assist in the provision of healthcare in the rural areas of Nepal. Friends are supporting the salaries of teachers at government schools, and the salary of nurses (midwives) at a healthpost. RAN has helped to buy land for building more classrooms, set up school libraries, and helped to buy science and other materials for the schools in two villages in Dolakha and Solukhumbu. The charity was registered with the UK Charity Commission in June 2008 (Reg No 1124311).
Nepal is a small country sandwiched between China and India. Famous for Mount Everest (Sagarmatha), Sherpas and brave Gurkha soldiers, there is a huge variety and there is much more to the country than just mountains. There are more than sixty ethnic groups, with over a hundred different languages in this tiny Hindu state.
Garimudi, Dolakha, is a village in the foothills of the Himalayas about 150km east of Kathmandu. This village is mainly populated by poor Tamang farmers and Dalits, the lowest caste and most underprivileged people in the country. The village has electricity and a road has been extended to the village. The people here mainly live from subsistence farming and some work as porters.
Deusa, Solukhumbu is a village further to the east, about 185km from Kathmandu, in the lower foothills of the Everest area. Well away from the main trekking routes, this area is very poor and backward, and receives no benefit from tourism in the Everest area a few days' walk north. There is no electricity at this village. The majority of the people here are Thulung Rai who survive mainly on subsistence farming and seasonal work as porters in the Everest area.
Madhela, Bardia close to the gates of Bardia National Park, Shree Jagadamba Higher Secondary School is a large school with over 1,700 students from class 1 to 12 and many classes have over 100 students. Close to the largest national park in southern Nepal, tigers rub shoulders with wild elephants and one-horned rhinos (all endangered species) and the school has an active eco-club that raises awareness about the importance of the environment of its own students, as well as to schools throughout the district.
Manthali, Ramechapp is in eastern Nepal, not far from Dolakha on the way to the Everest area. A poor hill district, the communities here have been working at saving credit schemes for the past 30 years or so. The Tamekoshi Cooperative Hospital at Manthali, the district headquarters is supported by the local people and works with the government health services in the district, also providing valuable out-reach services to healthposts and clinics in the more remote areas of the district.
Kathmandu: RAN supports the work of Women's Foundation. Though based in Kathmandu, WF provides women and children from all over Nepal with a shelter from abuse, as well as a running a daycare centre for poor children, a school that children can learn without fear of physical punishment and a wide range of women support services.
Teachers: RAN pays the salaries of a number of additional teachers in three schools (Garimudi, Deusa and Madela) with the help of sponsors like the Bolton Sacred Heart Primary School in the UK and friends of RAN. Teachers have been employed in the schools at Deusa and Garimudi since 2006 and d a primary school teacher in Bardia since 2011.
Nurses: With donations from doctors, RAN pays the salaries of two midwives, one working Deusa's government healthpost and the other at a small clinic set up by the villagers in a neightbouring village at Basa.
Medicines: Medicines have tended to be a problem in the healthposts; the supply inadequate and the range limited. Deusa Healthpost was not receiving the medicines needed, so every few months medicines were sent, provided by HexN (UK) (www.hexn.org). Now receiving an adequate supply, support is being provided to Tamekoshi Cooperative Hospital's mobile clinic, where health camps are being provided across Ramechapp district on a regular basis.
Volunteers: Volunteers help in the schools supported by RAN and schools in other areas. Teacher training is especially invaluable and experienced teachers are particularly in demand, providing a much needed and more sustainable contribution that lasts beyond just the time spent at the school.
Medical volunteers including medical students completing their elective, nurses, paramedics, doctors and dentists are very useful. In particular, Tamekoshi Cooperative Hospital welcomes medics who can help train local medical staff as well as assist at the hospital and mobile clinics and health camps around Ramechapp district.
Computers for schools: Computers donated by donors helped Garimudi Higher Secondary School to receive recently their first teacher to teach computing using the eight or so computers given to the school. Computers have also been donated to the higher secondary school in Bardia and a secondary school in Pyuthan district.
School libraries: From kind donations, school libraries have been started at Garimudi, Deusa and a small community school in Rukkum district.
Land for extra classrooms: More teachers at Deusa led to splitting the largest classes but then there was a shortage of classrooms. With help from a school in Adu Dhabi, land beside the school was purchased so that the VDC, District Education Office and Rural Reconstruction Nepal (RRN) could build additional classrooms, a science room and library.
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