Tag Archives: volunteer abroad

Fundraising and collecting Donations for a cause

Before arriving to Nepal, me and my friends did fundraising for Nepali Host Family to put towards their various projects for the children in Nepal. Back home, we had fund-raised some money by selling bottles of cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, sourced from regional South Australia. My parents helped bottle the olive oil into bottles bought in bulk from a family owned, local store. My brother then produced labels for the bottles which stated the cause of fundraising. With the help of both friends and family, I managed to sell 160 bottles of olive oil.

The bottles were advertised and sold via email and word of mouth. It was a great way to fund-raise because olive oil is such a commonly used item in Australia and so there was no trouble selling any bottles. Some of our friends had also donated for the cause. It was amazing how easily we could sell so many bottles in such a limited amount of time and we were over whelmed with the enthusiasm and generosity of our friends and family. Overall I believe it was a successful way to raise money for such a wonderful cause.

Alice
Australia

Fundraising would be the best way to help someone in need. We appreciate the efforts of Alice, her friends and their family for the help of underprivileged children in Nepal. The participant volunteers who travel to Nepal from different parts of the world to help in our volunteering projects – you are our hope and strength.

Nepali Host Family utilizes the fund-raised money for different social work projects in Nepal. With the money fund-raised by Alice and her friends, we have donated a Student Microscope to a local school in Kathmandu. This school does not even have a science laboratory. The teachers conduct the experiments in the classrooms. The donation of the Microscope was so much helpful for the teachers in teaching biology. The students are excited to see different histological slides of Amoeba, Hydra, animal cells and plant cells with it.
We aim to build a science laboratory for this school one day!

Some of the participant volunteers also help in our projects by collecting donations. They tell about the volunteering project they are going to get involved in to their friends, family and relatives. With the help of your family, friends and relatives you can spread the word in your school, university or town. People will be willing to donate if they can be made convinced that their money is going for a worthwhile cause.

Last year one of our volunteer from the Netherlands, Mr. Holger Neumann was able to collect enough donations to buy new clothes for the 35 children of an orphanage. Mr. Neumann had collected the donations from friends and family before coming to Nepal to volunteer in the orphanage. He took all the 35 children to a local supermarket for buying them new clothes. It was the first time for these children to visit a supermarket as they never get to go for shopping.

Our sincere thanks to all the wonderful people who have donated and fund-raised for our projects and thank you once again for believing in us!

We believe what Mother Teresa had once said, “If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.”

Nepali Host Family team

children-shopping-nepal
children-shopping-nepal
donation-for-children-nepal
donation-for-children-nepal

Volunteer work in Nepal

I have volunteered in Nepal for the last three years and the time spent there has honestly made Nepal into my second home. Each time I visit Nepal I discover even more reasons why I know I will definitely be returning again and again. A major reason towards making me feeling comfortable in Nepal is from my time spent with a local organization, Nepali Host Family. The first thing which attracted me to this organization was that it is a Non-profit and offers affordable volunteer programs. After actually volunteering with the organization where your money goes is completely transparent. Furthermore the money you actually spend with Nepali host family is a fraction of the cost compared to other expensive for-profit international volunteer organizations!

The second reason to choose Nepali Host Family is the wide variety of volunteer placements where you can volunteer freely and use your ideas and efforts. Personally since my primary area of expertise is working in the education sector, with Nepali Host Family I had the opportunity to do volunteer work with children in 3 completely different places. The first placement was working in a private school with children between the ages of 3 – 14. This volunteer placement really gave me the opportunity to meet some amazing teachers, a fantastic principal and some really talented and friendly students. There I was able to teach from the curriculum, play games, or just spent the time listening to intellectual ideas the students had about many topics.

My second volunteering placement was a Rehabilitation center for mentally challenged children and adults. This was a truly life changing experience because it was my first time volunteering, or working in such a place. There we were able to play with the students and decorated the rooms with posters we made from things we bought from a local supermarket. My last day at the Rehabilitation center ended with many festivities as the students decided to play instruments, sung songs and did some spectacular dancing. As much as it was an emotional time it was celebratory at the same time.

My last placement was volunteering with children in an orphanage. The first thing which immediately struck me about the orphanage was the great amount of respect the children have for visitors.  Predominantly from this respect it made the placement a very warm environment to be in.  What can be done in the orphanage really depends upon what the volunteers want to do. So activities can range from, organizing talent shows, arts and crafts, playing soccer, or even just tutoring the children will definitely be highly appreciated.

Another benefit of volunteering with Nepali Host Family is the volunteer accommodation where you will be living is really accessible to the placements. The volunteer hostel itself is a clean and comfortable place, with the organization staff which really goes out of their way to solve your any problems! The hostel is also very accessible to main public transportation area where there are buses which could take you to different places throughout Nepal. Nepali Host family staff plans many interesting trips to intriguing places which is good for the volunteers. I had the opportunity to visit a cultural site called Manakamana during my volunteer projects in Nepal this year in 2012. It was a nice trip and gave me the opportunity to make friends from around the world.

In sum the volunteer work experience, friends and memories will definitely stay with me forever and I know that for sure I will be back to Nepal again in the near future!

Adrian
Canada

volunteer program review

Volunteering, though highly commendable and personally rewarding, can be incredibly expensive! I still vividly remember the intense shock I experienced when researching potential organizations for the first time. Some of them charged ridiculous amounts, with prices equaling (and many times exceeding!) my ENTIRE travel budget! Sure these companies came highly recommended and had excellent track records, nevertheless it would be simply impossible for the average student traveler like me to afford it!

Then by a miracle I found the “Nepali Host Family”. I recall my first read-through of their Facebook page leaving me in disbelief: “these guys are offering all the same experiences as the other firms but at a MUCH CHEAPER cost! This must be fake”

So I looked into it and in no time I found out that they were serious! Their difference, they insisted, was to focus on the betterment of Nepal, not on profit. It Sounds too good to be true right?

Nevertheless my girlfriend and I decided to throw caution aside and give this organization a shot, and boy are we glad we did! Here’s why:

  1. The volunteer accommodation was awesome! We were set up in a spacious 2 bedroom complex with a communal western washroom (shared with only two other volunteers). Included was a communal kitchen which brings me to my next point…
  2. The food was incredible! Breakfasts and dinners are made by a house keeping woman who was super nice and who understood the meaning of “big portions” haha!
  3. The volunteer Program was nice of course! As I am going to study medical studies, the organization arranged time for me to shadow doctors at the local hospital. I can’t explain how amazing this was, being able to see patients being treated for ailments I had never seen or even heard of before! It was all definitely an eye-opening experience!Being at the hospital as a Medical volunteer in Nepal was awesome! The doctors immediately took me under their wing, walking me through their methods and procedures. The patient flow was a little slow (which was off-putting in the beginning) but this soon proved to be a blessing since it allowed more explanation time and even enabled  me to interact with the patients!But the highlight of it all was when I was invited into the O.R. by the chief of surgery to witness an operation! It was a pancreatic stone removal surgery which the chief was handling himself! The procedure lasted a little over two hours (since the patient had amassed over 10x the usual stone deposits) but the real showcase was the new technology which the surgeon used which was unique to only a handful of medical centers on the planet (I was informed that it was designed and produced in Beijing – which is also where the chief spent the time to study the skills required for this technique).  All in all, my time at the hospital was definitely well spent thanks to the wonderful cast of doctors there as well as all the eye-opening cases I was able to be a part of (a majority of which I’d never see in my homeland of Canada).
  4. and finally the orphanage with the children eager to learn and full of enthusiasm for us western new comers! I honestly spent every afternoon there and I don’t regret a minute of it! These kids were awesome (to be honest they weren’t all young kids; some were in their teens so it was a great mix of ages). Jamming out on their guitar, singing songs, helping with homework and of course playing football are still some of the best memories I’ve had during ALL my travels! The orphanage is by the far the single more important reason why I will one day return to Nepal!

So in all I had a wonderful time volunteering in Nepal, all thanks to the “Nepali Host Family” organization. I highly recommend it to everyone.

Jonathan
Canada

Best time to volunteer abroad in Nepal

In our previous blog post, we gave you some information about best time to visit Nepal as well as best time to do trekking in Nepal. Through this blog post, we want to give you some idea about best time to go for volunteering abroad in Nepal or intern abroad in Nepal. Well Nepal is a country where you can travel any time throughout the year. If you want to go to Nepal to volunteer especially then you can do it anytime but just remember few basic things regarding the festival dates when certain volunteer placements might be closed. Schools remain closed during the festivals and sometime during the winter. Below we are highlighting some important festival dates and month.

The Nepalese New year falls each year somewhere between April 12th and April 14th. The birthday of Lord Buddha also known as Buddha Jayanti in Nepal falls in the month of May. The schools in Nepal have their new session being started somewhere in April. So the children start to go to the new classes from this month. If anybody is going to volunteer overseas in Nepal in a school or becoming a teaching volunteer then consider starting from late April. If you are going to volunteer overseas in Nepal in an orphanage then do ask your volunteer agency about the timings you will be working in the orphanage because the kids of some orphanages go to the school during the day so you might not have much to do at the orphanage at that time.

The ancient festival of Indra Jatra in Kathmandu falls in the month of September. If you reach Kathmandu Durbar Square then you would be able to see the Living goddess known as ‘Kumari’ on this day out in public on a chariot. The greatest festival of the Hindus of Nepal, Dashain falls on the month of October. The other great festival Deepawali or Tihar falls between late October and Mid November. December 25th, the Christmas day is also celebrated in Nepal. The festival of Maha Shivaratri falls between Mid February and Mid March. This is the day when Lord Shiva is worshipped and if you are at the famous Hindu pilgrimage, Pashupatinath in Kathmandu then you would see lots of Sadhus smoking Marijuana and Hashish on this day. The colorful festival, Holi falls on the month of March.

Saturdays are public holidays in Nepal whereas Sundays are normal working days. The following are the festival dates for the year 2012/2013 in Nepal. On these dates, there will be public holidays observed. The Nepali year starts from and ends at Mid April of the English year.

According to the Nepali calendar year 2069 and starting from April 2012.

  • April 13th – Nepali New Year
  • May 1st – May Day
  • May 6th – Birthday of Lord Buddha
  • May 28th – Republic day of Nepal
  • August 2nd – Janai Purnima and Raksha Bandhan
  • August 3rd – Gai Jatra (holiday observed in Kathmandu valley only)
  • August 9th – Birthday of Lord Krishna
  • September 18th – Teej (women’s festival)
  • September 29th – Indra Jatra (holiday observed in Kathmandu valley only)
  • October 16th – October 29th is the Dashain festival
  • November 13th – November 15th is the Deepawali or Tihar festival
  • November 19th – Chhath festival (celebrated especially in Terai region of Nepal)
  • December 25th – Christmas Day
  • December 28th – Udhauli Parva
  • December 30th – Tamu Lhosar
  • January 14th – Maghi Parva
  • January 29th – Martyrs Day
  • February 11th – Sonam Lhosar
  • February 18th – Democracy Day
  • March 8th – Women’s Day
  • March 10th – Maha Shivaratri
  • March 12th – Gyalpo Lhosar
  • March 26th – Holi (Holi is observed on the 27th in Terai region of Nepal)

We cannot tell you this or that would be the best time to volunteer in Nepal so by looking at the festival dates, trekking season in Nepal and the suitable time when you have some time or holidays like summer vacation etc, you can travel and volunteer abroad in Nepal.

Festival of lights (Deepawali) in Nepal

Nepal is a land full of cultural diversity as people following different religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and other religions live together in harmony. The month of October – November sees a lot of tourists in Nepal because it is the main trekking season and today we are going to tell you one another good reason to travel Nepal in October – November.

The two great big festivals of the Hindus of Nepal, Dashain and Tihar (Deepawali) fall during the month of October – November. The first big festival Dashain is celebrated for 15 days and the second big festival Tihar (Deepawali) is celebrated for 5 days. Dashain falls between late September to mid October and Deepawali falls between late October to early November.

During last October, some of our volunteers got to witness the great Nepali festival of Tihar (Deepawali) and celebrate it in Nepali way. There were three Australian volunteers in Nepal working in an orphanage with 40 kids. The children of the orphanage celebrate the festival every year by visiting different houses and showing their dancing and singing talents in order to raise funds.

The 3rd, 4th and 5th days of Deepawali are the main days where children and youngsters go to different houses of their neighbors, friends or relatives to play Dheusi and Bhailo. Dheusi and Bhailo is the typical act where they sing the typical Dheusi and Bhailo songs and other Nepali songs. They dance with music and some people even play Nepali musical instruments like Madal and even western instruments like Guitar. They go to houses after houses and entertain the people living in the house. This is done because of the cultural reason and for fun. The people living in the house can also sing and dance and they exchange good wishes among each other. They can play Dheusi and Bhailo for a short time or it can go for hours as well. By the end of the Dheusi and Bhailo, It is a tradition that the people living in the house have to give some money to the people who came to the house to play Dheusi and Bhailo. The people who came to play Dheusi and Bhailo leave the house by giving blessings. This is also the festival when people get to play with firecrackers, play cards, meet distant relatives, and eat varieties of food, sing and dance. The festival brings everyone together and celebrates good time with family and friends. The joy of the festival drives everyone happy from children to elders.

Another big significance of the festival is that Hindu people worship goddess Laxmi (the goddess of wealth) by making every corner of the house bright. They light candles, oil lamp, and colorful lights and decorate the houses. Even the streets get decorated. This is why Tihar (Deepawali) is also called the festival of lights. In the 3rd day of Tihar, people worship cow which is holy and seen as the form of goddess Laxmi. In the 4th day, people worship bull. The 5th and the final day is Bhai tika or brothers and sisters day where the sisters put 7 colors tika on the forehead of the brothers, worship them with garland made of special flowers, give them sweets, fruits and different varieties of food to eat. In return the brothers have to give some money or present to the sisters.

During the festival of lights our volunteers who were in Nepal especially got to be a part of the festival and experience it from close. One of the volunteers, Lauren spent most of her time with the kids of the orphanage by giving them a helping hand in preparing many things needed for the festival celebrations. She made garlands, went with the children to different houses to play Dheusi Bhailo and made many Nepali brothers at the orphanage. We saw Lauren even got a Henna tattoo on her hand which the orphanage kids made for her. Nepalese ladies get Henna tattoo especially during festivals and different joyful occasions. So Tihar or Deepawali is the festival which you should not miss if you are planning to travel Nepal.