The enthusiasm of the people after the fall of the despots king Gyanendra
has turned into a general chaos. The "Nepali Congress", the
country's largest conservative party, currently has the upper hand because
its chairman, Girija Prasad Koirala, 85 years old, was elected Prime
Minister by all parties, including the Maoist rebels. The very sick
man unfortunately has to spend most of his time in hospital, which slows
down the progress of political activity. The Parliament, which the King
dissolved four years ago, meets again and serious negotiations are under
way with the two heads of the rebels, Dr Baburam Battharai and Prachanda.
There is currently a prolonged ceasefire, but the rebels are vigorously
refusing to disarm before the elections planned for April 2007, which
are to give Nepal a new constitution. The first is against political
cooperation with the Maoists, while the second is already engaged in
intensive negotiations with them. The rebels demand that the armies
of both sides be united into a single Nepalese army under the supervision
of the UN.
Meanwhile, a vast number of beautiful young rebel women are practicing
outside the gates of Kathmandu and presenting an impressive arsenal
of weapons to the extremely interested press. Women play a major role
in the Maoist movement and are known for their seriousness and perseverance.
The situation is more than unsafe and even more dangerous than at the
time of the dictatorship. Armed gangs of former Maoists or soldiers
of the former government raid banks and expensive shops and are released
three days after their arrest. Corruption has never blossomed before,
and people who used to be considered good friends suddenly become suspicious
because they try to cheat on you with a smile and an incredible "innocent"
appearance. Each cheque is checked twice by the bank and the alleged
customer is called to ensure that it has been issued.
We also had a nasty surprise: Our accountant, who has been such a serious
accountant for the past five years, probably infected by the general
atmosphere, had submitted a written protocol to our bank stating that
a meeting of our Nepalese sister organisation "Nepal Association
for Children's Care and Education" had taken place to decide that
the project needed a credit card because we would have to supply a carcinogenic
boy constantly with expensive medicines.
The necessary signatures of the 12 members and the president of the
organization were falsified by the young man, but the bank, which fears
for its good reputation, has appointed its writing specialists and informed
us in time. For all of us this is an incredibly sad and shocking event!
We had to "arrest" the boy ourselves and take him to the police.
Only if we had tried him for many years would he have remained in prison,
but since he hadn't had time to steal money, he would have been released
as innocent according to Nepalese law! The 10 days in the dirty prison
of Kathmandu he had to spend with serious criminals, murderers and rats.
When we decided to withdraw our complaint because otherwise he would
have become an even bigger criminal in the country's dungeons, he came
out of captivity repentant and deterred by the brutal treatment of the
Life goes on in this confusing everyday life. For example, you now watch
out for pedestrians not to be hit by bicycles and motorcycles. In this
way, a French girlfriend's purse was torn away with money and papers.
Telephone threats are part of everyday life and convey a very unpleasant
feeling of insecurity and fear.
In our two residences, the main house and the apartment of the bigger
ones, everything is still working. The impending tragedy of losing our
Pramod hovers like a shadow over the project. Chemo- and radiotherapies
didn't help, and now the doctors only care about the infections his
weak body can't defend itself against. It is a back and forth between
hospital for treatments and blood transfusions and "at home",
where we make life as beautiful as possible for him. He's only got one
or two months to live. We have welcomed his favourite nurse Svetscha,
who cares for him and our muscular dystrophy patient Raj Kumar in a
touching and loving way. Pramod's brother Prakash suffers greatly from
this terrible situation, which unites us all as a family. The hardest
thing for us is to laugh and have fun, because Pramod still believes
in his healing and seems to have no idea of his imminent end.
"For the past 4 years, our boss Deepak has been so helpful and
loyal to us that we have decided to send him to Thailand to study psychology.
He is a sensitive, intelligent boy who has no future when studying in
Nepal. The country's university degrees are not recognised abroad because
the level of education is incredibly low, and we believe that Deepak
deserves a better chance than most of our bigger ones. Continuing to
keep him as a managerial employee would be considered a mil3 usufruct,
because his task for the project takes way too much of his study time.
A full year of study at the International Missionary University of Thailand
(founded by Americans) costs "only" $4,900 US $ all inclusive,
and their certificates are recognized all over the world. Compared to
studies in England or the USA, this sum is acceptable, because at American
universities you have to reckon with a minimum of 20,000 US $ (e. g.
in Ohio) up to 45,000 US $ (in Harward) without costs and lodging for
one year! We know that Deepak is serious, and since there are no psychologists
in Nepal, he can be sure to make himself useful to the people of his
country when he returns.
Our main work continues to focus on the slums, where our girls always
work with a lot of dedication. Sija manages the project, but is now
only dedicated to social work. Since half of the project's employees
are slum workers, our position in the community has been consolidated.
Now there is mutual kindness and trust. Implementing ever better hygiene
remains the main concern and the main goal of the work. Again and again
Sija has to repeat the same advice. Now the groundwater is contaminated
by the rainy season, and many children are ill and have an infectious
lichen (Impetigo). We asked a young doctor to come and examine not only
the 200 children, but also their mothers. We now have our own pharmacy
in the slum and everyone who has problems comes to Sija to be treated
free of charge.
But we now know who the "less poor" families are and Sija
sends their members to the next cheap --" hospital on the grounds
that she doesn't know her case very well and that she should go to a
real doctor. Sija and her team don't take any vacations because they
are aware, especially the slum workers, that the children need their
basic food every day and all the efforts that have been made for three
years would be completely destroyed within a few days of holidays. We
are of course paying them for this extra work, because life in the slum
is extremely hard and especially unbearable in summer. All our admiration
goes to these employees, who have already achieved incredible results
with this long and difficult assignment.
It seems to us like a constant repetition to thank all of you who make
this work possible, but we do it with all our heart, because without
your financial support nothing would be possible. On behalf of all the
people you help to lead a better life, we wish you all the best and