Fund grass-roots learning & educational programs teaching local students & farmers new skills to help them continue rebuilding their lives.
Nelson / Tasman
The April/May 2015 earthquakes in Nepal destroyed approximately 80% of all standing structures in Bhumlutar, Nepal, severely damaged the schools, and killed 68 people and 473 animals. Golden Bay Friends of Nepal is run by 3 friends from Golden Bay who have all had magical and transformational experiences in Nepal. We have no salaries, no expenses and no overhead costs here in NZ. We volunteer 100% of our time to help our friends in Nepal rebuild and recover. 100% of every dollar donated to Golden Bay Friends of Nepal has gone (and will go) to helping the people of Nepal.
Since inception, Golden Bay Friends of Nepal has provided emergency supplies (medicine/food/tarps/water containers), metal roofing sheets for reconstruction of 32 houses, and construction of a 2-room learning facility building - the Golden Bay Friendship Academy.
In the Golden Bay Friendship Academy, we are teaching English, Computers, and Organic Agriculture to the students and local adults. We want to provide the skills and knowledge for local residents (mostly rural, subsistence farmers) to begin earning some income to begin rebuilding. Growing higher value organic crops (like tea, coffee, garlic, tomatoes, pineapples, etc) can provide opportunity for locals to remain in their villages and begin rebuilding.
Use of your donations:
Pay running costs of Golden Bay Friendship Academy (teacher salaries, internet, electricity)
Purchase materials (PVC plastic sheets) for small greenhouses around the village
Build several additional rainwater storage ponds for year-round water supply for crops
Purchase supplies and provide training for local honey production (bees, hives, tools, etc)
Pay visit fees for quarterly on-site training sessions by local Nepali experts (coffee, bees, etc)
Purchase some simple musical instruments for student enjoyment/creativity/development
Establishment of fruit garden to feed children fruit during breaks
Creation of women's group (weaving, seed saving, handicrafts, etc)
Creation of village cooperative to sell organic produce in Kathmandu and trekking areas
Offer basic yoga and meditation course on Saturdays (adults and children)
Develop online educational program for students
Build rubbish/plastic incinerator for village
Build solar dryer for drying mushrooms, fruits, etc
Long term goals:
Provide agricultural training to local farmers to enable them to grow higher-value organic (pesticide-free) crops (subsistence farming to income farming)
Set up village cooperative to sell high value organic crops in Banepa, Dhulikhel, Kathmandu
Develop first organic homestay in the village (for village income generation)
Develop volunteer program for foreign students (English, computers, agriculture, earth building)
Create agricultural learning/training/distribution centre (nursery) for local village distribution
The villagers and children are enormously grateful for the help Golden Bay Friends of Nepal has provided and have donated lots of their own time, sweat and energy to start rebuilding their lives and their community. love to turn our donations into a living, breathing, nurturing school. Our dear friends in Bhumlutar Village are receiving no other external assistance. We have a respected and trusted friend in the village (Bhupal Kharel) who is overseeing the project and the distribution of funds, he was the previous teacher at the destroyed school and is so excited to be teaching the children again. Feel free to visit our website or contact us if you have any questions, suggestions or requests. We are a NZ registered Charity (registration number CC53344) and we exist entirely on donated time so there are no costs, fees, or overhead. Whatever amount you donate will go directly to (y)our friends in Nepal. Thank you so much for your support. The people of Nepal thank you, too.
Our website: www.gbfriendsofnepal.weebly.com
Golden Bay Friends of Nepal is a not-for-profit club based in Golden Bay, New Zealand with an aim to provide relief to underprivileged people in Nepal suffering genuine hardship in the wake of the 2015 devastating earthquakes.
Dec 2020 Update, Progress and New Projects/Fundraising 22 December 2020
Golden Bay Friends of Nepal
Dec 2020 Update from Nepal, Progress and New Fundraising Goals!
Namaste friends, supporters and whanau (family) of Golden Bay Friends of Nepal,
We would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your continued support in Nepal and hope you are safe and healthy. While 2020 has presented no shortage of change and challenge in Nepal (and the world), it has also presented opportunity. We are moving forward with projects in Kavre district Nepal and finding ways of using your generous donations to create positive change and opportunity.
Ongoing and completed projects since our May 2020 newsletter (details below):
Upgrade of Dalit (untouchable) community water system for 15+ families
Distribution of 70 pairs of turkeys to families & students (100% success rate!)
Turkeys - breeding, "Gift-A-Pair-Of Turkeys" fundraiser & egg success
Completion of house for Kamala and donaton of Juffalo the buffalo
New earthbag house for Dipa (Dalit widow) and her 2 daughters
Teacher salaries for remote teaching for 65+ village students
Poor villager assistance programme (22 familes for 1 month)
Distribution of (non-hybrid) seeds and seedling
Learning / teaching supplies for 3 nearby schools (370 students)
Making hand sanitizer
Give the gift of Love - Fundraisers you can support (details below):
NZD USD Give the gift of:
$30 $20 A pair locally bred turkeys to a new family
$75 $50 12 months of remote teaching/supplies to a student
$359 $254 A female buffalo (to Dipa or another Dalit widow)
Any Any Donation to Dipa's (earthbag) house reconstruction
(Goal: NZD $8,815.28 / USD $6,255.32)
You or your recipient of choice will receive an e-card as a token of gratitude. Just make a donation and email us the recipient's email address.
Water storage system upgrade for 15 Dalit (untouchable) families
Cost: NPR 52,800, USD $431.13, NZD $771.25
After many delays due to Covid, we finally managed to get the materials to the village and completed the construction of new piping and 4 high-strength, upgraded water tanks for the local Dalit (untouchable caste) community in Bhumlutar. This upgrade provides clean, safe, reliable water storage for 15+ families in the village and replaces the broken water system resulting from earthquake damage years ago.
These colorful and strong tanks provide an all-day storage system for safe drinking water, eliminating the need to fetch water from distant taps often broken or malfunctioning. Having a supply of nearby water will also save countless hours and lots of precious calories for families no longer needing to haul heavy water containers from distant (and unreliable) taps. This will allow the villagers to use their energy for more productive tasks like growing food, feeding animals, and caring for their family.
Donate-A-Turkey (70 pairs distributed to the village w/ 100% survival)
The 70 pairs of baby turkeys that you all generously donated (25 pairs from US donations and 45 pairs from NZ donations) are now nearly fully grown and all are enjoying life with their new owners. Bhupal did an amazing job transporting and caring for the baby turkeys and we are proud to report that we had 100% survival rate this time. The turkeys were distributed around the village to their proud and happy new caretakers - the students and the families of Bhumlutar.
Here are some photos from the goodness you have all helped to enable in Nepal. Your $20 donations will have a lasting and positive impact on these families. The joy and companionship these turkeys bring their proud new owners is evident in the photos and the turkeys certainly help to create some smiles in Nepal and provide some much needed love and companionship for local families during these challenging times.
More great turkey news!
Turkey breeding success - approximately 25 families are breeding turkeys
We are excited to report we now have approximately 25 families breeding baby turkeys! This is an absolutely fantastic result and a testament to the knowledge gained and shared by Bhupal with the community as well as the farming skills of families around the village. We have learned that chickens can be used to hatch the turkeys out of their eggs. We are planning to introduce a Baby Turkey Buyback Programme in the Spring to generate income in the village from turkey breeding and share the love of turkeys.
Gift a pair of locally bred turkeys to a new family
Donation: 1 Pair = NPR2,000 / NZD$25 / USD$20
Step 1: Families breed new, healthy, baby turkeys in Spring 2021
Step 2: GBFON uses your donation to pay NPR1000 for each 10 week old turkey, creating income for local villagers and incentive for families to breed
Step 3: GBFON gifts a pair of baby turkeys to a new family, providing another family in Kavre district with an opportunity for income, nutrition and companionship
Turkey eggs for income and nutrition
We also have many families producing turkey eggs which is also fantastic news. This provides better nutrition for children and families and an income source for selling turkey eggs. The turkeys are not currently laying many eggs as temperatures drop and winter approaches in Nepal, but we will update you on egg production and turkey breeding in the springtime (April/May 2021).
Kamala's house completion and purchase of Juffalo the Buffalo
The transformation from tin shack to new house for Kamala & her 3 children is complete! Building a new house for Kamala (a Dalit/untouchable widow and her 3 children) was our most ambitious and fundraiser to date and is now providing comfort, security and opportunity for Kamala and her 3 children. The house is now painted, lights are on, and Juffalo the Buffalo is now part of the family. The buffalo, which we have named Juffalo, was donated by Brian Bridge in memory of the passing of his brother Jeff in early 2020 (Jeff + Buffalo = Juffalo). Juffalo is extremely healthy and getting lots of love and fresh greens from Kamala and her family. Juffalo will start producing milk later next year to provide income and nutrition. We also provided bed frames, mattresses, blankets and pillows to the family. Thank you again everyone for providing Kamala and her 3 beautiful children with a new house, a new buffalo, and an entirely new life! Without your amazing generosity this would not have been possible. Kamala and her children are extremely grateful for your kindness and gifts.
Gift a Buffalo to Dipa (see below) or another Dalit/untouchable widow
Donation: NPR 30,000 / USD $254 / NZD $359)
Provide a widow and her family with milk, nutrition and income
A buffalo in Nepal is a rural family's most valuable asset
We will update you via email on the growth and progress of the buffalo and the positive impact it is making on their lives
Our most ambitious fundraiser to date
Give Dipa (a Dalit/untouchable widow) and her daughter a new life!
Earthbag house made w/ local labour & materials, buffalo, toilet, & more
Fundraising goal: NZD $8,815.28 / USD $6,255.32
Your donations and have literally created a complete transformation for Kamala and her family from tin shack to comfortable home. Kamala and her children now smile in every photo and see opportunity and hope instead of despair and challenge. We feel inspired to share the love and help another Dalit (untouchable caste) widow in Bhumlutar named Dipa and her daugher Ishwori.
Here is their story:
Dipa's house was destroyed in the 2015 earthquakes and she didn't have money to rebuild. Her husband was a labourer and porter who unfortunately and suddenly died from a heart attack just before the earthquakes. Dipa received a government earthquake victim grant of NPR 50,000 to build a foundation but spent the money on food and survival. Dipa has 3 daughters (2 grown) including 14 year old Ishwori, who sometimes lives with Dipa, but Ishwori often stays with her step-sister as she finds her mother's house/tin shack too uncomfortable. We hope to change that.
How we intend to help:
Dipa has limited opportunity to work due to a leg injury suffered while farming. She had an operation but still walks with a severe limp. As a Dalit widow in Nepal she has a low social standing in Nepal and has extremely limited means to re-marry or work her way out of her situation without outside help. Here is what we want to provide for Dipa and Ishwori:
1 earthbag house & outside kitchen (NPR 648,690 / USD$5,500 / NZD $7751)
1 Buffalo NPR 30,000/USD$254/NZD$359
1 Toilet NPR 30,000/USD$254/NZD$359
2 Bed frames NPR14,000/USD$$118/NZD$167
2 Quilts NPR 5,000/USD$42/NZD$$60
2 Mattresses NPR 5,000/USD$42/NZD$$60
1 Pair of turkeys (NPR 2,000/USD$20/NZD$25
1 Small greenhouse with seeds (NPR 3,000/USD$25/NZD$35)
Total Fundraising Goal: NPR 725,690.05 / USD $6,255.32 / NZD $8,815.28
Why an Earthbag house? Why Good Earth Nepal?
Good Earth Nepal (http://goodearthglobal.org/) is an NGO (non-government organization) in Nepal enabling villagers to rebuild safe, comfortable, affordable houses after the 2015 earthquakes - using local materials. They lobbied the government of Nepal to accept earthbag as an acceptable method for reconstruction post earthquakes in 2015 - and succeeded. They have built schools, houses and dwellings all over Nepal. We visited an Earthbag project in 2018 for another Dalit widow and were impressed. Now they are ready to help us build Dipa and Ishwori a new house. We just need your help and generosity.
They have fundraised and run volunteer programs to build disadvantaged Dalit widows and their children living in squalor (tin shacks) proper, safe, comfortable earthbag houses. They change lives and provide opportunity. With borders closed and volunteers absent, it has been a challenging year for Earthbag construction projects. But we hope to change that by building Dipa and Ishwori a new earthbag house - using local labour instead of foreign volunteers!
To complete Dipa's house, Good Earth Nepal will employ local labourers / carpenters / roofers creating much-needed local income. They will run workshops in Bhumlutar to teach earthbag construction to the labourers and any interested locals. Bhupal recently visited one of their projects (see photos below) and he (and Dipa) are very impressed. Building locally and sustainably is a priority for us and we would like to introduce an Earthbag house into Bhumlutar as a new (and local) building option.
Fundraising! Please make a donation if you would like to help Dipa!
1) Make a donation
2) Share this newsletter or Facebook page with anyone you know
3) Contact us if you would like to help fundraise for Dipa and her children - you can host a school or community fundraiser, donate a portion of the travel fund you may not be using this year, or contact us for more ideas.
We have the opportunity to create a safe, new, comfortable life for Dipa and her children - let's do it!
GBFON's Covid19 Response
Teacher salaries for remote teaching
Even during the best of times, Nepali government schools are regularly closed. Go trekking in rural Nepal and you will see government schools more often closed then open. Due to Covid lockdowns, government schools in Nepal (and Bhumlutar) have been closed for a large part of 2020 to the detriment of local students. In an effort to minimize risks of community transmission and to abide with school closures, the Golden Bay Friendship Academy has also been closed for a large part of 2020. But, this has not prevented our team on the ground (Bhupal, Kopila and Ranjana) from continuing to safely teach. They have adopted a daily program of visits around the village to teach 65+ students English, Math, Science, Nepali and other basic subjects. Our 3 teachers have been using masks and social distancing to provide on-site, remote teaching.
Even when the government schools are allowed to open, students must remain home during certain days of the week to enable distancing and have a rotating schedule (Monday: grades 1,4,8, Tues: grades 2,5,9, etc). During weekdays from 6:30-9:30am and again from 1-5pm, Bhupal, Kopila and Ranjana are safely visiting outside the homes of students (with masks and sanitizer) to provide on-site teaching, give homework assignments and continue to keep the students engaged. Every student gets a visit at least every 3 days to check on progress and check homework. Teacher salaries are the biggest recurring cost for GBFON (per month: NPR 44,000 / NZD$558 / USD$372) but also provide significant opportunity for the education of children in the village. If you would like to support our remote teaching efforts, please make a donation.
Support a student with 12 months of remote teaching
Donation: NZD$75 / USD$50
Teaching & homework from Bhupal, Kopila and Ranjana for a local student
In-home, safe teaching for 1 student for 12 months
Includes learning supplies (pencils, notebooks, study books), some basic art supplies, and salaries for our 3 teachers.
Poor villager assistance programme (22 familes for 1 month)
Covid has closed borders, displaced workers and sent people from the cities back to live in their native villages. Even local labourers have been asked not to work in some cases for fear of spreading Covid to others. So the implications are deep and we can't yet fully understand them entirely. But what is clear is that some people are struggling more than usual and not everyone has been able to plant enough food for winter and some are experiencing hardship. We have identified 22 local families (many of them Dalits) who can use help. We have decided to supply them with 1 month of staple food supplies to help them get through tough times. We would like to thank a very generous anonymous donor who is sponsoring all 22 families for 1 month. A full update with photos will be coming soon. More help will be needed - please get in touch if you would like to support other families (the cost per family is NZD$38.54 / USD$26.10) for 1 month of supplies. Here are the costs and details of what we are providing the 22 families:
Family support program NPR (ea) NZD (ea) Qty Cost (NPR) Cost (NZD) Cost (USD)
Rice (30kg) 1800 $23.29 1 1800 $22.45 $15.21
Cooking oil (2 litres) 165 $2.13 2 330 $4.12 $2.79
Beaten rice (3 kgs) 85 $1.10 3 255 $3.18 $2.15
Salt (1 kg) 25 $0.32 1 25 $0.31 $0.21
Dal (3 kg) 140 $1.81 3 420 $5.24 $3.55
Sugar (2kg) 85 $1.10 2 170 $2.12 $1.44
Tea (2 packets) 45 $0.58 2 90 $1.12 $0.76
Cost per family 3090 $38.54 $26.10
22 families 67980 $847.86 $574.26
Distribution of seeds and seedlings
We have also purchased NPR2,000 (USD $16.95 / NZD $23.88) of local, organic, non-hybridised seeds. We will plant a portion of the seeds in poly-bags for distribution around the village to those who need better food. We will also distribute seeds directly so locals can grow a wider variety of more nutritious food.
Learning / teaching supplies for 3 nearby schools (370 students)
Cost: NPR 44,400 / USD $375.16 / NZD $574.50
Cost per student: NPR 120 / USD $1.00 / NZD $1.52
Bhupal has been visiting other nearby villages (Pachar, Aala Timreni and Chaubass) to develop relationships and see how we may be able to help out. These villages also have seen some people displaced because of lockdowns and many students unable to attend school. We have decided to provide 370 students in the following 3 schools with learning materials so they can continue to learn even if lockdowns return/continue. Huge thanks to Shanti Smith and her daugher Isla who have generously donated NZD$574.50 to purchase notebooks, pencils and educational books for 370 students. Below are photos of the happy students receiving their notebooks and pencils in Chaubass village. In a future update we will send photos of the students receiving study materials in Aala Timreni and Pachar villages.
Village School Class Students
Pachar Bakshyawori Prabi School 0-5 82
Aala Timreni Joyaladevi School 0-8 88
Chaubass Setidevi Secondary School 0-10 200
Ayurvedic prevention and management
Bhupal and Thomas ("Taj") studied together at Hansada Yoga Ashram near Banepa and learned some Ayurvedic techniques. The Nepali government has issued this (very useful) report (link here) which Bhupal will use to provide Ayurvedic Covid-19 prevention and management techniques in the village for those seeking assistance. It is worth a read.
Homemade Hand Sanitizer
We have sent NPR 3,000 to Nepal to purchase supplies for making hand sanitizer in the village. Bhupal, Kopila and Ranjana will use it and distribute it to children and families around the village when they visit during remote teaching sessions. Hygiene in Nepal is marginal at the best of times and we hope to improve awareness around staying clean and healthy.
Dhanyabad "Thank You")!
We know 2020 has been challenging for many, and we would like to say "Dhanyabad" ("thank you") for your generosity, kindness and compassion. Without your gifts from the heart, the projects above would not be possible. As always, we have no salaries, travel expenses, no offices and pay for our own overhead so that 100% of your donations go to helping the people of Nepal. Whether you donate $1 or $1,000, it all goes to funding projects helping rural Nepalis on the ground in Kavre district. And as always, if you would like to support a particular program let us know and we will make sure your donation enables that particular outcome.
We hope you have enjoyed seeing and reading about the positive change you are creating with your generous donations. If you would like to create more opportunity in rural Nepal and support the initiatives above, please make a donation. Please feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone who may also be interested in supporting our Friends in Nepal or follow our Facebook page: "Golden Bay Friends of Nepal".
Stay safe and we wish you Happy Holidays and hope you have a fruitful 2021.
With love and light, Golden Bay Friends of Nepal Committee
(Thomas/"Taj" Chairperson, Rita - Secretary, Kees - Tresurer)