“Empowerment Through Education” — Friends of Himalayan Children

The Children of FHC Batase Hostel – Mendho

Current as at December 2015, Thanks to our Sponsorship and membership officer Kylie White for this contribution.  If you are interested in Sponsoring a child please check out our Sponsorship page.

Mendho Tamang is 13 years old and studying grade 7. She has an older brother Subash who is studying in Talamarang. Mendho enjoys studying English and her favourite animal is an elephant. Mendho has been part of the FHC family for 5 years.

Mendho Tamang

Mendho Letter dec 2015

Mendho Letter dec 2015

 

(Monday, December 21, 2015)

The Children of FHC Batase Hostel – Anita

Current as at December 2015, Thanks to our Sponsorship and membership officer Kylie White for this contribution.  If you are interested in Sponsoring a child please check out our Sponsorship page.

Anita Tamang is 14 years old and studying in grade 8. Anita and her two sisters are from Mahangkal village; they have no parents. Anita enjoys studying Maths and playing football.

Anita Tamang

(Monday, December 21, 2015)

The Children of FHC Batase Hostel – Dolma & Mingmar

Current as at December 2015, Thanks to our Sponsorship and membership officer Kylie White for this contribution.  If you are interested in Sponsoring a child please check out our Sponsorship page.

Dolma Lama is 13 years old and is studying grade 6. She has one younger sister, Mingmar who is also living at the FHC hostel. Mingmar is 10 years old and studying grade 4. Dolma and Mingmar have been part of the FHC family for 4 years. Their mother passed away and their Father Pemda requested FHC support.

Dolma

Dolma

Mingmar Tamang

Mingmar

 

(Monday, December 21, 2015)

The Children of FHC Batase Hostel – Rimmaya

Current as at December 2015, Thanks to our Sponsorship and membership officer Kylie White for this contribution.  If you are interested in Sponsoring a child please check out our Sponsorship page.

Rimmaya Tamang is 12 years old and currently studying grade 9. She has two sisters and has been living in the FHC hostel for 2 years. Her home village is Urleni. Rimmaya enjoys studying English. Rimmaya has no parents.

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Rimmayas letter December 2015

Rimmaya Tamang

(Monday, December 21, 2015)

FHC Teacher training program November 2015

by Marion Mundana

Teacher Training Program

Eckerhart and I came to Batase Village with the intention of conducting a teacher training program for the staff of the Shree Batase Village School and an English course for both the FHC staff and students at the school.

The teacher training course has been a resounding success. The teachers of the school rose to the challenge of expanding their teaching skills in a second language teaching environment. The course had taken Ekkehart and I several months to write as we wished to get across aspects of teaching method, organisation, activities, and feedback that could be applied in the classroom. The task of delivering teacher training in an ESL environment required careful thought and deliberation. We developed a series of icons and explanations to simplify this process and gave teachers a hands-on experience of what it is like to be in an active learning environment. Each lesson taught according to explicit teaching methods and so included the important aspect of feedback. Incorporated into every lesson was a variety of classroom organisational techniques (such as group work, partner work, partner speaking) and activities (word sorts, card games, partner speaking). It was a joy to see the smiles and hear the laughter as these teachers, after a long day of work, engaged with the process of active learning. Towards the end of the course the teachers began to practice these techniques in front of their class, a major achievement considering they were operating in English. Our feedback so far from the teachers is that they are very excited and thrilled to be showing these techniques and they already have plans to introduce them into the classroom. Considering this is a 10 lesson course, with the main aim of offering an overview of potential teaching strategies and exposure to the experience of active learning, the course has exceeded our hopes in that teachers feel both motivated and confident to transfer new knowledge into the classroom. In fact in our discussion with teachers, they were already applying techniques and strategies.   We would very much like to return to Batase Village to continue our work with these teachers in a coaching capacity and to deliver further teacher training to the staff. there were repeated requests from the teachers that we return and continue with the training.

As trust developed between  Batase school staff and us, we are approached about internal management issues of the school and asked for advice. The staff began to talk about behaviour management issues and some of the problems that they were facing in the school. This led to an impromptu discussion on behaviour management policy and how it is carried out in the classroom. Ekkehart follow this through by developing a presentation of the whole school behaviour management plan as a suggested model for school. He presented this at our last session on Saturday.The staff were very appreciative of this sense of direction and I believe Mr Jam is taking immediate steps to begin the process.  We pointed out that to develop a whole school behaviour management plan must involve all stakeholders and is a slower process.  But they all feel very motivated to improve behaviour at the school and want to get started.

It has been a pleasure to work with the teaching staff and to build a trust relationship with them. The feeling in the school is very positive, particularly after the school plans were delivered by Caritas. There is a feeling of wanting Batase School to be a school of excellence. This is exactly what I had hoped to encourage through teacher training. With motivated and excited teachers outcomes for students will improve and Batase will be known as a school of quality and high achievement. This is a long-term goal but one that is certainly attainable. I had a conversation with Bhima, and FHC teacher who said to me “ I am so happy to be at Batase School. I’m so lucky to be working for the FHC. I’m getting good training I’m improving my skills and I’m very excited to be here.”

(Saturday, December 12, 2015)

Distribution of donated goods Dec 2015

What a wonderful week it has been, sports shoes, beanies and clothing have been distributed – for most of the young recipients this was their first pair of shoes. Thank you to Emma Smart, Julie Savage and everyone else who donated the sports goods. The most recent Take On Nepal volunteers group loaded up their backpacks with donated beanies, scarves, ponchos, blankets and teddy bears and set off on foot to isolated villages in the Sindhupalchowk district and distributed these items to villagers who were in desperate need – particularly so as winter is setting in. This was a long walk to villages that Som hasn’t even been to before! Everyone felt thankful to be able to give women with little babies a nice warm blanket, hats and scarves. They are in such need of warm clothing items and hopefully we have made their Winter a little more comfortable after the distribution of the items.

 

Thank you so much to Roz Pulley (we really wish you could have been here to see this happen), the Lioness Clubs’ of the Cairns region and to Dennis Voak from Cathay Pacific Airways for making this happen, we wish you could’ve seen all of the happy, smiling faces.

 

Read about the logistics of getting donated items such as these to Nepal here: http://www.f-hc.org/news/nepal-freight-logistics/. FHC is currently about to send another 400kg of donated goods soon including much needed school resources.

 

As always if you wish to help FHC please donate here or alternatively you might consider doing a fundraiser – check out our fundraising guidelines.

(Saturday, December 12, 2015)

FHC – Empowering students through education post earthquake.

FHC is working to address the current education crisis caused by the Nepal earthquake, and its aftermath.  Part of this process is to provide students with the tools to become educated, which will result in empowered young people.

A proper school bag and school resources (pens, pencils, exercise books etc) is a necessity for any child’s education, and even more so for those travelling great distances to school on foot. It is not unusual for these young people attending school to walk 3 hours a day for an education, always carrying books in their arms.

Sadly it is beyond the financial capabilities of most Nepalese village families, to provide this most basic package to their children.
These school bags and educational packs are not only a practical item for the children in the remote villages of Nepal, they will bring new hope and dignity to thousands of children, who really do understand they are valued, when they witness the rest of the world extending a helping hand.
A school bag and school resources become powerful items in the hands of children who have never been provided with them. This is a direct investment in students, who will become active agents of change, and provide hope for the future of Nepal.

You can buy any number of bags for $15 each. Each bag will be complete with pencils, exercise books, and an all important hygiene pack. Once you purchase a bag, it will be delivered to a school child in one of the schools we work with in Nepal. (You will not receive anything in the mail yourself).

Donations towards this project can be made through this link or the FHC homepage on the website http://www.f-hc.org/

or Alternatively, donate directly into our bank account

Westpac Bank (Community Solutions Cheque Account)
Account Name: Friends of Himalayan Children Inc.
BSB: 034664
Account No: 262957
Please use your full name and ‘School Bag’ as a reference.

 

(Sunday, November 22, 2015)

Education Update November 2015

Exciting times in the FHC education department. There is lots happening and we are all excited.

–  The top of the list is our new School bag project  – we have 1000 bags tendered currently and will be given to school children at up to 15 schools (currently) and will include pencils, pens, exercise book and a hygiene pack. this will be an ongoing project and will see FHC breaking new ground here. Read more and this link.

School meal program (lunch) has now extended to all grades, and is prepared by the school staff with an additional room for this catering. We have a dedicated team working on this project alone further improving its sustainability and its benefits can only further enhance the education of these children, simply by providing a quality meal.

– Teachers. We now have a teacher per class, this includes the 8 FHC employed teachers. The Local School government minister has promised that by next July Batase will have an additional 3 government teachers. This will enable our teachers to be able to be sent to outlying (feeder) schools to improve their education standards so when they arrive for year 8 they will be a similar standard.

– School building –  An Organisation (Caritas) from Switzerland  has visited and have committed to building a new school in Batase village. Caritas will build and fund this school, which will be earthquake proof and have many facilities. Caritas have been interested in this project in Batase as they have recognised the high level of education provided and support provided by FHC. Som thanked all FHC members for supporting FHC and education. The construction of this Building will commence on the original school site October 2016. FHC will need to build/move the temporary school on another site until new school is completed – this project may take 12 months

– Cairns High school

  • Cairns High School have a Human rights awareness program called ‘WE CAN’ commencing in 2016 and the project was presented to the FHC November general meeting by its instigator Christina Lee.  Read about it here.
  • Joe Benzie, CSHS year 11. Fundraising. Family visited during Batase school in the September holidays plus 1 week. They Trekked to village which they found eye opening and looking to give back. They organised a Tennis fundraiser in aid of FHC at the Cairns International Tennis centre and presented check to our meeting for $1360.
  • Joe also presented $891 from the Cairns High interact club – Interact clubs are sponsored by individual Rotary clubs but are run by students within the high school.
  • FHC has also received a donation of $3,000 from the Cairns High business club.

– FHC plans to continue this great relation ship with Cairns High on a regular basis in 2016 and into the future. In fact we are planning on continuing our work with all the local schools we currently work with.  Committee member Brian Duncan is working on maintaining and creating new connections with local schools in far north Queensland and encouraging sponsorship of teachers, with the view to maintain ongoing teacher sponsorship. Plus creating local awareness and involvement with our charity and our regular income. To give you an idea of this sponsorship it is $100 per month (lowest wage) e.g. prep teacher up to ~$200 per month for a grade 7 teacher.

 

(Saturday, November 21, 2015)

Human Rights Awareness Campaign “WE CAN”.

Good afternoon everyone, my name is Christina Lee and I am a Year 11 Student currently studying for International Baccalaureate Diploma at Cairns High.

My passion is human rights; my ambition is to become an international human rights lawyer and my dream is to give every human the equal opportunity and right to endeavour their own dreams to the fullest. Earlier this year, I had the privilege and honour of being chosen as one of the 16 Australian representatives to be part of the 2015 UN Youth Australia Aotearoa Indigenous Rights Leadership Tour. The tour had two principal aims: to build awareness and understanding of the issues Indigenous peoples face at home and abroad; and to inspire young leaders and help them develop the essential skills to take action on these issues in their communities. I have been wholeheartedly inspired to become the change I want to see in this world. After my experience in New Zealand as an UN representative, I was inspired to bring what I have experienced and seen into our community. In order to allow more students to share their passion and discuss international issues in a safe environment, I proposed the idea of a Human Rights Awareness Campaign titled “WE CAN” to my principal at the School Council meeting in August. After a long process of discussion, the campain has been agreed on by the school council to be implemented and acted upon in Cairns high. The core purpose of this campaign is to raise awareness for global human right issues and taking local action on a global scale.christina

I am here today to talk to you guys  (FHC) about the very first human rights awareness campaign at Cairns State High School!  The human rights awareness campaign is titled “WE CAN” Why? Because I strongly believe that together we can be the change that we want to see.

You might be wondering why I am talking about this project with FHC. The main reason I am here today is to let you know that this campaign’s core value is THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY. So our project will be working very closely with Friends of Himalayan Children. Hopefully for many years to come. I am forever grateful for all the work and dedication you guys put in, and all I want is to give back to the organisation that has inspired me in so many ways since the start of my high school journey.

What will WE CAN bring to this community?

1. It will open young eyes to the world. I have noticed that so many of my friends complain daily on how much homework they have. I know that I do sometimes. But what I realised is that; we have homework because we have a school to go to. We have bills to pay because we have a house to live in. Youth of today are so buried in their own issues, their own miniscule problems. When you realise that there are kids out their risking their lives every day just to hold a pencil and sit at a desk, you start to think differently. Cairns high will be voicing our support for the empowerment of youth, which is vital to instigate a prosperous future for our society.

2. The opportunity to lead in the local community to make a difference.

3. To show that young people have the power to create change.

Purpose of the campaign:

1. Raise awareness of human right issues across the community. As someone who is always looking for opportunities to simply talk about these issues, I believe that having a student led team will create numerous opportunities for people who are interested in these issues. It provides a safe place within the school community to discuss openly about international issues- in learning about human rights, we learn about ideas of respect, fairness, justice and equality. We also learn about standing up for our own rights and about our responsibility to respect the rights of others.

2. To fundraise for different kind of global human right issues at a local scale. I have thought about which organisation our campaign can work with. And because of my admiration of Friends of Himalayan children, I have chosen this wonderful organisation! Our WE CAN project will work very closely with Friends of Himalayan Children. So basically the idea is that Friends of Himalayan Children is based in Cairns, however the funds are raised for the education and child slavery in Nepal, where our school can greatly contribute to economically, while raising awareness of these issues here in Cairns.

christina1

What will the campaign do? I believe all human right issues need to be brought to the table, as it consists of so many different areas. So the campaign will focus on a particular issue such as poverty or human trafficking per semester.

From term 1 next year, we will hold regular meetings at lunch times and make our school a voice for human rights.

On a particular week next year, there will be the very first event run solely based on raising awareness for human rights. Where guest speakers such as Som, PowerPoints, posters, games and a barbecue will be held. All for raising awareness of these issues. I believe it is okay not to be aware of these issues, as that is what WE CAN is for. However, it is not okay when people act ignorant towards them.

Finally, whenever someone asks me, ‘why are you so passionate about human rights?’ I always respond with these few sentences. Somewhere in the world, there is a girl or a boy my age. That girl or a boy has some dream, a dream so minuscule like holding a pencil, but that some dream won’t come true unless someday in their lives somebody walks in and decides to change their lives. I truly believe that each and every one of you here is that somebody and I too want to be that somebody.

All I can say is this is the start of an exciting journey and I hope that our WE CAN campaign can contribute greatly to FHC.

Thank you so much.

Check this short video of Christina speaking at our general meeting – https://www.facebook.com/f.hc.marketing/videos/10153304396301902/

(Wednesday, November 18, 2015)

Nepal Freight Logistics

Ever wondered how we get a lot of the donated gear and clothing etc to Nepal.  For a bunch of volunteers the logistics is amazing and probably one of the reasons we often state that we’d prefer monetary donations. Cash does allow us to invest in Nepal and drive local economies, however the work put into some of the drives for woollens and such provides some amazing items which represents work from the heart and gives it a lot of meaning.

Roz, one of our committee members and a long time FHC supporter has given us a little insight into some of the latest movements of some of this gear to Nepal.

Cathay Pacific kindly gave us free freight for 13 boxes weighing 200kg in September. The Cairns Sun story ran September 22 and they were delivered into Kathmandu on September 25, which was amazingly quick. About nine of those boxes were large boxes from Cairns Lioness Club, organised by Gail Dudeck. These contained hand knitted, woollen blankets, jumpers, beanies, scarves, booties, etc knitted by ladies all around Australia who send this to Gail. It trickles in all the time. The remaining 4 boxes contained school resources donated by a teacher from Edge Hill State School and these will be used in Batase School.
About the same time many other consignments of goods went to Nepal.
* Jonathan and Daniel were each given an extra baggage allowance by Cathay Pacific and between them took about 90kg of knitted blankets, jumpers, beanies, scarves. Some of these came from Daniel’s neighbours in Redlynch (a small amount). Most were knitted by a group of ladies from the Sunshine or Gold Coast, who contacted about 20 organisations before she found ours, ie someone willing to send this to Nepal. No one else would take it because they had no way of getting it there. It was beautiful stuff and the blankets came with knitted trauma teddies attached to them. Also included in this was at least 10 sleeping bags (from Cairns City Backpackers), music instruments for Batase School, etc. All of the above is still in Kathmandu I believe, awaiting distribution. this is due to lack of appropriate storage in the village since the earthquake.
* Another family group also took a bunch of stuff from the Sunshine Coast ladies in the September holidays.,
* At least 20kg went with two couples who know Som and they were travelling to Kathmandu. Again more knitted stuff from the Sunshine or Gold Coast. This is also in Kathmandu.
* Som also took a heap of stuff to Nepal in September, including backpacks (from Cairns City Backpackers) plus more knitted gear, again from Sunshine Coast I think.
* My niece in Abu Dhabi recently sent 5 x 5kg (25kg of athletic clothing and gear) for the runners in Batase. I believe this is also still in Kathmandu.
* I have just Shane and Kylie nearly 20kg of more knitted blankets, jumpers, scarves, hats, gloves, socks and booties from Cairns Lionesseses, other local knitters and knitters from other parts of Australia.
* I am hoping to give Som and Susan a bag of 33 new fleecy jackets I just bought for $1 each = $33. Som also has more stuff at his place to send.
I also am CURRENTLY preparing a further 200kg consignment of mostly school resources (all the stuff Kylie got from Edge Hill State School) to send with Cathay Pacific in a second free consignment in December. It will also include clothing, shoes, boots, socks, gloves, blankets, quilts, flannelette sheets, flannelette PJs, school backpacks, etc. This is likely to be spread over about 20 boxes. I use the A4 photocopy paper boxes for school books and these fit about 10kg of books in each one. Even after all this is packed up and I have given another 200kg to Cathay, I imagine I will still have quite a lot still stored at my house.
* I have given priority to the warm, woolly stuff.
My biggest hope is that Shane, Kylie, Som and Susan can help distribute this in Nepal as soon as you get there to the people who desperately need it. I would say that we currently have 100s of woollen jumpers, 100s of beanies and many dozens of blankets awaiting distribution. I know Som wants some of this to go to Ramechap, but I just want it to go somewhere as soon as it can. I know fuel is a problem and everything has come to a grinding halt, but what about the poor people living on the streets of Kathmandu who are also going to freeze. If you find people in need over there, hand some around. In Chisopani, in Talamarang, in Batase, wherever.

(Tuesday, November 17, 2015)

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About FHC

Friends of Himalayan Children Inc. is a registered charity started by Som Tamang in 2010. It funds numerous activities in Nepal, aimed at helping Nepalese orphans empower themselves through education. Current projects include the XXX school and hostel.

Charity Number: 54788547

Contact Us

  • r Phone:
    (123) 456 7890 / 456 7891
  • h Email:
  • m Address:
    Friends of Himalayan Children Inc.
    PO Box 4587, Cairns, Australia