Kinderhilfe Nepal e.V.Charity Organization for Nepalese Slum Children

Newsletter April, 2010

Dear Friends,

No moving forward in Nepal's difficult political situation.

United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon's envoys are still working unsuccessfully on peace building between the Maoists and rivalling parties. The Maoist army of rebels, who handed in the weapons years ago, would like to join the National Army although other parties reject this request strictly. As the traditional parties will not move any step towards the Maoists although during last elections they missed the absolute majority very closely, the UN refuses to name the number of liberation combatants remaining in the jungle. The government suspects UN's commission to favour the Maoists and therefore would like to see them draw back. Consequently, the political situation is blocked and leads to never ending debates instead of governing.

Water deficiency and up to 16 hours without electricity are paralysing urban life as people are just trying to stay alive. The crime rate is raising: it almost became popular to rob public transport and killing people by burning buses. Criminals are often released shortly after their arrest due to overcrowded jails. The majority of the Nepalese cannot afford staple food anymore as the prices are almost as high as in Europe. Rice and water are mostly the ingredients of the daily menu, sometimes supplemented with lentils or other vegetables. In 20 years of experience of working in Nepal we have seen the cohesion between ill-nourished children and their later achievements in basic education. Damages caused by deficiency of vitamins and minerals in the early childhood cannot be compensated only a few years later. As their mothers are often ill-nourished as well, their breast milk cannot provide all the necessary components to enable a healthy upgrowth. Therefore we are aiming to support as much infants as possible with baby oatmeal, which is supposed to provide necessary ingredients. Unfortunately the costs for the baby oatmeal are far too expensive for most Nepalese. But still, infants getting the baby oatmeal are getting stronger and are growing much faster , which is nice to see. Therefore we extended the nutrition program and the medical support to two more slum areas. Djayanti from Banshighat and Sija were happy to introduce Sri Kumari und Maya to their new work in the slums of Palpakot und Smakhusi including taking care of healthy food and hygiene. Sija is responsible for health care and is handing out medicine.

This time the women from Banshigat, who acted regarded us with suspicion in the beginning, prepared a small party to thank the Kinderhilfe Nepal for supporting the slum. These women are now able to work and therefore earn money to make up their daily living as their children are looked after in our kindergarten. As we were making plans for the future we decided to install electricity in the slum area of Bangshighat by June. The current electricity is built on lose cables, which can cause electric shocks due to charged tin roofs. A secure electricity will cost us about 1000€, which we think is a good investment.

In Banshigat we furnished a new class room for children belonging to the ethnic group of the Maute, who are mostly nomads living in tents and usually make a living by sending their children begging. A raising number of Maute families are spending the winter in slums to start tramping around in spring again. Last November we were able to convince the parents to send their children to our school for free education instead of bagging. Fortunately this deal worked! Although the children are difficult to teach as they are very lively and badly educated, Sija is noticing a huge progress as the children are able to keep themselves clean by now and enjoying education a lot. Even out of school hours, the pupils are supported by their teacher Ramesh in doing their homework.

Furthermore we are supporting a dozen students from the former "Children's World" in completing their studies in health care for the next two years. Deepak is doing his Bachelor in Psychology in Thailand; Goma, who is blind, is finishing her BA in English in Dehli, and Tenzing, Smita and Rita are busy studying physical therapy and nursing in Bangalore. The 45 students were are supporting in the slum area Pathivaras by taking care of their school fees are evolving.

Sija is attending a course in Psychology for children, which is usually only offered to employees of kindergartens in wealthy neighborhoodswe. Her gained knowledge is also used to improve our other staff members' skills.

Thanks to your support we are able to help the poorest members of the Nepalese society in the slums of Kathmandu and give those children a future !

Many thanks for your support and all the best!

Elisabeth Montet