Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Beginning.....

During this year the one question that everybody asks me is, “Why are you doing this?” I read a quote this morning from my husband’s favorite writer Dr Seuss that said, "Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple." I tried to explain it to everybody, making it sound more complicated than what it was. But if we listen and go quiet we can hear what our hearts are telling us, and for me I always knew that I wanted to help in some way. How to do it was never clear and that was the journey. Finding out what it was I needed to do, was much harder than making the decision with my husband to actually do it and to stop thinking about it.

I had lived in Nepal for 8 months and when I had to leave I knew that I would be back. My husband joined me on a trip two years ago and then the seed was born. For a year we talked about it, not really knowing where to start or what to do. We were thinking about the cost of the tickets to return and then on a domestic flight with Delta, they offered us each a $400.00 coupon to take a later flight. At that point we knew that we needed to go back. We had $800.00 discount on our tickets to Nepal, but still no plan. For about three months we looked at so many different options, not really knowing or having any experience. I probably wrote to every government agency and non-profit organization in Nepal to ask for information. None of them replied as I guess they thought what does this crazy woman want to do. She has no money, no plan and she is talking about coming here to start some project which she is not even sure of. But eventually we decided that we would want to do water tanks, because it was fairly simple to do and there is a huge water shortage in Nepal. Second phase I started writing again, and still no response. And then I saw the Prilosec OTC competition. It was a competition where you could write about your passion or dream and Prilosec OTC would sponsor a certain amount towards this project. I entered and we were able to get over 700 votes. The journey to find the school to work with on this project was another story. I think the recipients of these emails from me really did not take me serious or did not really understand what our plans were. My husband learnt everything he could about building a ferracement tank and we looked at various options. After about three months later, and a few schools that did not work out one of my old friends from Kathmandu contacted me and he suggested that we work with his old school. We were so ecstatic as eventually we had a school we could focus on.

We started collecting school supplies for 170 children, through donations, writing and looking for sales we eventually reached our goal. We were also able to secure sponsorship for 60 back packs and some extra back packs were also donated. I have been working on a plan to do some art and craft classes at the school. I believe that each child has the need to dream and be creative. I am not sure exactly how this all will come to be at this point. We have collected enough paints, coloring pencils, markers, activity books and crayons to start these activities. With the help of two volunteers that will be joining us, we plan to do activities with each classroom.     

This is all in a nutshell what happened this year. Now we are at the beginning of a new beginning, a new story to tell. As of yet, we are not quite sure how things will work when we get there, but we are two people with a dream and a passion to make it work. Thank you for reading our story and sharing your time with us. 

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