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Hoddesdon to Himalaya
Club and Students
school in Nepal
When a deadly earthquake hit Nepal in 2015, Kathmandu
was all but destroyed. As a result a close working relationship has developed with a
British Rotary club and local schools in Nepal.
The outcome of the Rotary Club of Hoddesdon
in working to rebuild a school in Nepal hit by the earthquake of 2015 has been
a close working relationship with two local schools. Students from The John
Warner School and Robert Barclay Academy (formerly Sheredes School) were
enlisted to help with the ambitious project. The students have under taken a
project, named H2H (Hoddesdon to Himalaya) with the Rotary Club to visit
Janasewa Higher Secondary School near Kathmandu and help with the rebuild. It’s
been a long haul, however with a fair amount of networking taking place across
Rotary clubs around the world, from the Rotary Club of Kathmandu Mid Town to
the Rotary Club of Landshut Germany, contributing funds along with a few philanthropic
contributors, the project had been ongoing over a number of years but reached
crisis when blocks were damaged in the earthquake.
The devastating earthquake killed nearly 8,000 people, and
the Janasewa Higher Secondary School, based in Kathmandu, was badly affected
with one teaching block ruled unsafe for classes by government inspection
officers. Yet despite the damage done to much of the school, the grounds still
provided refuge and shelter for many of those who were rendered homeless by the
earthquake, with over 40 families still residing in relief camps on the
school’s football fields today.
The Hoddesdon Club heard from a member of their partner
club in Nepal Dr Chandra Lekha Tuladhar, “A portion of the school was damaged
by the earthquake which was recently retrofitted and made safe. Since the day of
the quake till now the school provided relief to the community as many wards
were badly affected. Bringing the school back to normality is a long drawn task. Painting of furniture or classrooms when the time draws near is what we thought would be suitable to get all the volunteers involved.”
Some of the fund-raising events run by the Club with keen support by
the students include a Rotary vs. Hoddesdon Town football match, a quiz, a
local dragon boat race, a virtual horse racing night and even a joke book that
sold well last Christmas. Sponsorship was forthcoming from several businesses. Hoddesdon
Rotarian David Johnston is leading this project from the front. David commented,
“It supports Rotary’s focus on education and helping local communities worldwide
after disaster. The results will be sustained in Nepal and in the local Hoddesdon community.”
The 10 young people taking part on the trip led by Rotarians from
Hoddesdon Rotary Club will spend almost 3 weeks in Nepal undertaking a work
programme at the school followed by a trek to Everest base camp. All
participants have been in training with treks locally and there is a big test
trek taking place shortly in the Welsh mountains.
Reprinted from The
Rotary magazine of Great Britain and Ireland, October 2016
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