We still know them well from the restoration of the public school in Gorkha, the Scouts and Guides St.-Bavo Eversel (Belgium) with their action program “together for Nepal”. After the earthquakes in Nepal, they collected money in Belgium for years to give the damaged buildings a facelift. With their own hands, because in 2017 they traveled to the abandoned village of Shreenathkot to see with their own eyes why their help is so necessary and valuable. Now, two years later, the memory of Nepal and their work is still alive and kicking. This time they are going to work with us on improving the life conditions of female illiterates in Alapot. The aim is to teach them skills to be able to hold a financially independent position in the labor market. The project is led by HCH Nepal’s Isha Khatiwada.
The idea of the pilot comes from teachers of the Bal Bikas school in Alapot. Here too the foundation has restored the school buildings of this large school with the help of, among others, Award Netherlands. The place Alapot is largely inhabited by Thalit, the lowest caste, which means that from a religious point of view they are not seen as “full” people. This objectionable system also ensures great social isolation and less access to regular educational facilities in daily practice. On a small scale we try to break through this by creating these basic facilities and opening them up to disadvantaged groups. The position of women, who often have insufficient or no reading and writing skills, is particularly worrying. They are completely dependent on family or a marriage to provide for their existence.
Together with Bal Bikash, an empowerment program is set up in which around 170 women from this target group are given the opportunity to take (free) lessons in which professional skills are acquired for common (paid) work in the field of knitting and sewing, making clothes, face and face skin care. In addition, they also learn sufficient skills in the field of arithmetic, writing and reading. But information is also part of this in order to gain more insight into the factors that influence their personal situation and thus increase their resilience.
For this “vocational training” an extra teacher is appointed for the group (s) and all necessary learning materials are provided. Thanks to funding from the scouts, a first pilot can already be planned in the short term.