Heather Trudgill - Care & Community in Nepal
In October 2015, I and five other pupils took part in a Care & Community project in Nepal for two weeks. These few weeks were the most eye-opening weeks of my life; I really feel that the project helped me experience so many new things and also helped me take part in something that was so beneficial to others. We began the project in the centre of Kathmandu whilst staying at the Prince Hotel, this hotel was extremely accommodating, welcoming and made my stay as comfortable as possible.
The first week of the project took place at Shree Yuwa Pratibha Vidya Madir secondary school and was the most rewarding part of the trip. During this week I got the chance to refurbish three very basic, small and shabby classrooms. Each day was a new step in the decorating process from white walls to bright and colourful murals. However the decorating was not the only enjoyable part of the visit, we got to work alongside the wonderful children and teachers of the school who I’d say are hands down the most generous people I have ever met. The children were full of so much enthusiasm to meet and practice their English with us; we even saw them reading aloud the English words from our mural, which was wonderful to see.
Apart from working at the school in the morning we also got to take part in activities such as a Nepali language class, sari shopping, a trip to the monkey temple and even visiting a HIV centre. Although the sound of visiting a HIV centre appears daunting, it was actually a very warming and special experience. We got to learn about how the centre is run but also got to play with and meet the children and their mothers.
At the weekend we got the opportunity to travel five hours to Chitwan National Park. The journey was via the Nepalese mountain side where the view was beyond breath taking. During our stay at the Rainbow Resort in Chitwan we went on a jeep safari where we managed to see wild rhinos, deer, crocodiles, monkeys and exotic birds. Later that day we also took a cruise down the river in a wooden canoe, I have to admit that the crocodiles in the water were too close for comfort but the surroundings however were beautiful.
In following week we went back to the school we had been painting to run some lessons with the children and also to provide a dental and personal hygiene programme. We taught the lessons in pairs and covered topics such as parts of the human body and physics but also performed some songs and dances for the children to join in with. The children also got us involved in their playground games and chants which were great fun. I really feel that the children benefitted from our hygiene presentation and seemed very excited about being able to brush their teeth as they continued to brush them for over twenty minutes.
I loved this trip and I hope that anyone who reads this feels motivated to go out to Nepal and take part in a project such as this. It really is an experience to remember.