Kinderhilfe Nepal e.V.
- April / May 2011 -

Dear Friends,

at the end of March 2011 we had the chance to ask an administrative officer of the ministry of finance how the amazing sum of 50 Billion US $ Nepal is getting from the UN per year is spent. According to him no improvement can be noticed in Kathmandu because the money is spent in the back-county. In fact in Nepal nothing is transparent. The second biggest party (the Indian-influenced "Kongresspartei")refuses to join the government with Maoists. Although the Maoists themselves are splitting up and cannot decide, who is going to take part in the multiple party government. The caste system is official forbidden, but in fact it still keeps promising individuals from a professional career.

The Tibetans, who are escaping from China to Nepal, are often arrested. The Chinese government is more and more present in Nepal and supports the Nepalese officially with weapons. Electricity is mostly there when nobody needs it: between 10 pm and 6 am. The lack of water remains a massive problem: half of the population has no access to toilets, rivers contain excrement and poison, the groundwater keeps polluting. Two out of three Nepalese have no access to drinking water.

Especially in the dry period of the year, the supply of water in our slums and therfore fighting for a better hygiene is quite difficult. Even people from us have only one bucket of water per day to keep clean. In the slums, the wells are carried to an end. In a meeting with women of the slums we discussed the best ways for the 6000 inhabitans of the Banshigat slums how to survive with that lack of water. The water that is promoted as drinking water by the government contains germs. Thus, we are carrying out a water-cleaning product.

The annual gynaecological check-up is installed successfully again. Half of the women are suffering from vaginal infections, which actually makes a check-up of their men neccessary. Our advices are probably changing their attitude towards hygene, but still, they are deeply connected with their tradotion and it will take a long time to change their habits.

Still, there are touching situations: we asked women, who make their living with rubbish to clean themselves before the return home in the evenings, so that their children will learn about hygene and get less ill. The following day, the women were walking aorund in Saris surrounded by their clean and washed children asking for our reputation. But as a result they did not have anything to eat as they could not have gone to work with their Saris.The next morning, they were back to the rubbish. This ist he only way fort hem to get water and food. In addition to that, they are living in a 3 square meter room with 6 or 7 people companied by rats, lice and cockroaches. They are dealing with it and we have to, too. A bit of rice and lentals juice ist he only food they can offer their family. Thanks to your support we can offer every child up to 5 years a milk pudding containing the neccessary vitamin and minerals.

The children, who are in our classes for alphabetisation to be able to go school as soon as possible are causing a big effort as well. We have to introduce strict rules and timetables as the children only came when they felt like it. Their presence is now checked as well as their hygene. Until today 80 children go to scholl thanks to our financial support. In Nepal nothing is for free: no money, no school.

The 70 slums in Kathmandu are placed quite centrally in the governemntal area. Someday they are probably destroyed by heavy bulldozers. Still, some inhabitans are trying to build stone-made houses. It is not just the bulldozers, which are a danger to those houses, but also the expected earthquake. In Nepal two tectonic plates are meeting eachother and already caused the Himalaya a long time ago. About 80 % of the buildings in Kathamndu would not resist such an earthquake.

In one of the slums we were supporting with food, we quit our work. In this area, a promising improvement can be noticed. People do have the money now to buy food for their children themselves. Although some of them will rather buy televisions or motorcycles! The attitude of the parents is sometimes exasperating. But we keep our approach: you can understand and fight against poverty, but this is different from being ripped of!

We are checking the circumstances of the people first before we are helping. ILife is extremly hard eypecially for single mothers. Illnesses, accidents or age are keeping them from taking care of themselves and their children.

We would like to forward their thanks and the light in their eyes to you . They have no idea about wars and catastrophes in the world and they are living in poverty, but still: they are much happier than most of us in Europe. What they care most about is the portion of rice they need today. There is no future, when you have to fill your stomach.

Best regards

Elisabeth Montet