Nepal has a countless number of children who are blind, deaf, or physically disabled with many of them developing their disability under the age of five due to malnutrition and lack of medical care. They face numerous challenges in addition to having to cope with their impairment from a society that has traditionally viewed them as outcasts and people to be avoided. And are still considered to be a punishment for the sins of previous lives by many of the older generations but there is hope at the end of the tunnel with attitudes slowly changing.
This prevailing view has contributed to a shockingly low education rate for the disabled in Nepal and a recent study showed that nearly 60% of disabled men and nearly 78% of disabled women had no education. And without education, Nepal’s disabled children face a bleak future, with little hope of supporting themselves or using their talents to contribute to their communities.
Another factor that contributes to the lack of education is the economic hardships faced by Nepali families. Because even in government schools there are a certain amount of financial expenditure many families have to make hard choices and educate the able bodied first. This becomes more apparent when the schools that can accommodate the needs of disabled students charge a higher price of tuition, sometimes equalling more than the annual income of a Nepali family.
Why are EHN involved?
Over the last few years EHN have faced many problems relating to so called genuine projects that really want to make a difference. But one of the best we have been introduced to is the Maitri Griha because from the founder down to the lowest member of staff these guys really care about their work. And the best way to see this is with a visit the day care centre and see these children’s smiling faces you will know why. They have the passion and after 8 years of building such a strong organization they are really making a difference to these children’s lives. And this has been proven time and time again over the last couple of years EHN has been working with them.
Now as we become a UK registered charity we really want to do more by building a closer working relationship with the this centre by bringing more support directly to them.
Why the do we support them?
Nepal has many registered organisations that support mentally challenged children in Nepal but one of best must be this organisation. Having spent the last 8 years working from nothing and developing a system that over has been tried, adapted and adapted again you will find they achieved a system that works. They will openly admit there have been times when they have struggled, had setbacks but each time this organisation has picked themselves up and carried on. Now they offer a vital service for the mentally challenged children from poor families in the surround area of the centre. Allowing the families the opportunity to work if possible to support themselves and giving the child a safe friendly place to stay in daylight hours.
The aim of this centre is.
There is to provide a safe environment in the day time hours when their parents are busy for a number of years and help develop their personal skills to gain as much independence as possible. They focus on developing practical abilities like personal hygiene, eating, cooking, dressing, dealing with money and gardening. And also social skills like self-confidence, interaction and cooperation with others. This project is run under the auspices of the Buddha Jyoti Himalayan Nepal youth club which has been a Non-profit organisation working in the social sector for the last 8 years. Fully registered with the Nepali government and the Social welfare council it provides a welcome haven for all challenged children.
- Providing a safe atmosphere of love, acceptance and personal care.
- Encouraging each individual child to grow and live with respect and dignity
- Helping to achieve personal independence as much as physically possible.
- Providing council, guidance, emotional and social support for the parents and family members.
- Promotion of care for mentally handicapped children in general.
- Social reintegration of mentally disabled children in the community.
- Working with handicapped girls.
How you can Help?
To keep the project running there is always need of support through volunteering and donations. With participation you can help contribute to improving the situation of mentally handicapped children in Nepal. Because they are one of the abandoned, neglected and most helpless groups here in the country.
- Providing clothes, playing and educational material
- Doing volunteer work depending on your skills and interests.
- Teaching music, art or other classes
- Organizing activities
- Making a donation
We would like to open a counselling centre for the parents where basic training would be available relating to working and living with mental disabilities. And to organize a training plan for the staff whenever possible in order to provide the best care for the children.