Please join me in our child sponsor/donor trip to Nepal November 2019! Each year I travel to Nepal to visit our children, our NGO partner and to provide oversight to our programs for underprivileged children in Nepal. I invite you to see firsthand the difference you have made to the lives of our children. Come and experience Nepal, a culturally rich country with diverse religious traditions, amazing natural beauty, art and architecture and of course, the Himalayas.
Join us this July to climb either Mt. Rainier or Mt. Baker, both in Washington State, to support the work of the Mitrata-Nepal Foundation For Children to educate disadvantaged children in Nepal.
Choose Your Mountain!
Due to National Park Regulations restricting us to one route on Mt. Rainier this year, we've decided to add a climb of Mt. Baker as a slightly less serious option - both in terms of difficulty, and time commitment.
No prior mountaineering experience is required for either mountain. You will be trained on how to use technical mountaineering gear like ropes, harnesses, ice axes and crampons during the ascent.
Climbing these mountains are physically challenging endeavors, but if you get in serious shape, most people can be successful -- depending on weather and route conditions.
The word Christmas has something magical about it and its universality is like no other. It invokes a certain feeling of joy, readily conjures up the season’s imagery, and it softens and lightens hundreds of millions of hearts and minds across the globe; across cultures and age groups, and as history stands witness, even across frontlines and trenches. That’s Christmas.
Contact Center has always been big on Christmas celebrations. And it’s not difficult to guess why. Children love gifts and they like to have fun. Christmas brings happiness in the form of sharing and celebration, togetherness and attention, renewal and respite, and partaking of good food.
This year, like every year the kids at the Contact Center received warm jackets for their Christmas gifts. They danced and joyfully caroled Christmas songs and later proudly paraded from room to room donning their new jackets and woolen caps cheered on by the onlookers in the teachers and staffs, and volunteers.
The Center wore warm and welcoming Christmassy feel right from the morning with piles of gifts neatly stacked under the brightly decorated Christmas tree. With every head sporting a Santa hat the whole place looked like Santa country.
As I reflect on 2018, on this last day of the year, I am filled with gratitude. Our sponsors and donors continue to support our children in Nepal and our organization here in USA. We successfully graduated more children from our program to become independent adults and continue to add new and wonderful board members and child sponsors. Our partner organization in Nepal, BSF, has made tremendous strides as an organization with dedicated staff and hard work all year to lovingly provide care, counseling and guidance to our kids in Nepal. Thank you to all the BSF staff!
We hosted three successful events this year, Trivia Night, the Climb for Himalaya Children and the Holiday Bazaar. Thanks to our many volunteers we had great fundraisers with lots of fun.
The children and staff at the Contact Center paid tribute to the late Mrs. Bhuvaneshwori Satyal who founded the Contact Center almost 20 years ago. Having grown up and educated in Gandhian values and educational system in India, she devoted her entire life working selflessly for and helping underprivileged children and women in Nepal.
It's the sixth year since her passing. The staff and children remembered her this past week talking about the values that shaped her life and work.
This week, our Nepali partner BSF distributed a set of fleece blanket, bed sheet and pillow cover to each of our students at the Contact Center amidst the clouds that were forming in the Kathmandu sky because of a tropical cyclone Phethai that had originated over the Bay of Bengal which quickly rendered Kathmandu and many eastern parts of Nepal frigid. For our Contact Center children and their families who mostly live in small rented tin shacks or single room apartments, which are ill-equipped to keep themselves warm, winters are always a harsh and biting reality.
For 16 years we have made a difference in the lives of poor children in Nepal by providing education, healthcare, housing and support services. Your contributions through the years has made this possible.
This September, the Social Welfare Council (SWC) in Nepal, in their annual organizational audit, required an immediate increase in classroom space for our Contact Center or a reduction in the number of children we serve. We are not in a financial position to relocate the Center immediately or in 2019. As a temporary solution, we were approved to add two classrooms in a nearby neighborhood building, requiring additional staff members and funds to set it up properly. Thanks to a few Mitrata friends, we raised the funds necessary to setup these temporary classrooms. In 2019, we plan to look for a larger permanent space to move the entire program to meet the SWC’s requirements in 2020. We will begin planning this critical need early next year and estimate an overall budget shortfall of $32,000.
I never imagined that it would turn out this way. My friend Christine founded the Mitrata-Nepal Foundation for Children six years after I took my first trip to Nepal. Having been profoundly moved by the people of Nepal, I wanted to do something to give back. When presented with the opportunity to sponsor a little girl, I jumped in. Mamta was six years old when the sponsorship began. Ironically, she was born the year I first traveled to Nepal. I received photos of her a few times a year and we wrote very simple letters to one another. She drew cute pictures of houses and mountains, all of which I still have. We had a shared dream of meeting each other, which we finally did when I travelled back to Nepal for a sponsor trip in 2009. After seven years of letter writing, Mamta and I were thrilled to meet! We were both a bit shy with each other at first, but that shyness dissipated after we got the opportunity to dance and shop together. A lifelong bond was formed.
Please join us for our Annual Holiday Bazaar on Sunday, December 2, 2018, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Masonic Lodge in Webster Groves.
Shop for the holidays and listen to great music to support our underprivileged children in Kathmandu, Nepal. All textiles, jewelry, and handicrafts were personally selected from fair trade artisans by Stephanie, Mamta, Alexis, Christine and our Traveling 20 while in Kathmandu visiting our children.