KATHMANDU—As the spring climbing season begins with hundreds of climbers heading to the Everest base camp, Google Earth has launched a new platform to inspire young people to learn about our planet.
This new version of Earth will have a streamlined UI; introduce a new feature called Voyager — a rich storytelling platform with partner-authored content; and offer tools like “I’m feeling lucky” and “Knowledge Cards” to make sure there’s always something more to do and learn about.
The Voyager features a collection of map-based stories from around the world. It will be updated weekly, providing fresh compelling stories to help guide Earth users learn more about the planet.
It has different stories group like Travel, Nature, Culture, History and more. It also features interesting stories from Nepal on World Most Dramatic Mountain category and showcases works on mountains including Everest and Ama Dablam.
The highlight of the feature called This is Home is a preview of the Home of Kancha Sherpa, the last living member of the 1953 expedition, when Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first people in history to summit Mount Everest. You can see the home of Kancha Sherpa.
You can also hear his experience from the expedition and know more about his house.
Google Earth Outreach has partnered with StoryCycle and the Apa Sherpa Foundation to help locals in the Everest region digitally represent their areas on Google Maps.
Apa Sherpa , a 21-time Mount Everest climber and chairperson of Apa Sherpa Foundation, said, “Khumbu region is famous for being home to Everest, but it’s also the home of the Sherpa community. I hope people viewing the images online will develop a deeper understanding of the region and of the people who live there.”
Saurav Dhakal, founder and curator of StoryCycle said, “Google Earth is the very interesting educational tool for everyone to understand the world. The Home Project could give different understanding about Nepal and Khumbu region. The Google Earth platform has given us energy and excitement to work on more interesting map-based storytelling projects in the years to come.”
The new app will be available on the web via Chrome browser at and a native Android app available via the Google Play store. It will also soon be available on iOS. Previously, Google Earth was available on desktop and mobile (Android, iOS). Note that the Android app will be rolled out to all users over the course of a week.
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A three-week exhibition of art, craft and multimedia with the title of “Nepal Show 2017” has been open for public. The exhibition will support the artist from Nepal who are affected by the earthquake.
Chairman of Rotary Foundation Paul Lucas, President of Art Council Fort Worth, Karen Wiley, Director of Story Cycle USA Ram Pokhrel and Curator/Founder Story Cycle Saurav Dhakal Jointly inaugurate the Nepal Show 2017 : Opening at Fort Worth Community Arts Center, Gendy Street, Fort Worth, TX.
Chairman of Rotary Foundation Paul Lucas said “It's very impressive work to promote traditional knowledge and save skillset to rebuilding process, this show definitely encourage artiest for their work”
President of Art Council Fort Worth Karen Wiley said “ I am delighted with the artistic work done by Nepali artist in a very creative way. Storytelling through art is universal language and it is the best way to share to the world”
StoryCycle in association with Fort Worth Community Arts Center (http://www.fwcac.com) and Crafted in Kathmandu organise , a three-week exhibition of art, craft and multimedia that will run from from April 07 - April 26. Beside sunday it will be open from 9 am to 5 pm whole day.
Curator of the show, Saurav Dhakal, said, “We are trying to promote storytelling using arts, crafts and multimedia and this is first experiment for us to showcase such multiple approach for storytelling. This show will help to promote artists and also promote Nepal’s positive image in the world.”
Nepal is a country with rich tradition of crafts, both secular and religious. Men and women create these crafts like their forefathers have done for centuries. They continue to exhibit a high level of skill passed on from one generation to another. They still use primitive tools and work in very rudimentary settings, yet the results are exquisite. Little is known of these people and the workshops and studios where they create these arts and crafts.
Nepal is undergoing significant development in social, economic and environmental fields and as a result these crafts are at risk of dying out. Young people who are instrumental in bringing about these changes aspire to the values of the developed nations and they no longer want to follow in the footsteps of their forefathers as crafts practitioners. For this reason, the time to record the life and work of this unique group of people is running out. It is thus important to raise awareness about the work of these people and record it on time.
The exhibition project will be on show in the United States from April 07 - April 26, 2017. We will present the life and work of these people through photographs, written documentation, videos and physical objects. The presentation will provide a holistic view of the fine arts and crafts as they are at this point.
Art : Show have a collection of artworks from our Everest StoryCamp that was led by artist RK Thapa (http://storycycle.com/everest ). Recently, we conducted Dumja Art Camp with a team of young artists led by Surem Deshar , which will be showcased at the show. We have a few collection of traditional Thanka paintings by Tasi Lama and Juni Lama.
Craft : Show have a collection of crafts with the theme ‘When Heritage falls, Artists Rise’ from the team of Crafted in Kathmandu (http://craftedinkathmandu.com.np) and a few collection of crafts made at the Early Childhood Development Center.
Photograph : collected a number of photo stories from the StoryCamps and Build Camps. There are selected pictures from these camps. Major Pictures are from Lamjung Areas by Nabin Baral
Cover Story : This is the new and interesting section where our storyteller Saurav Dhakal will share the story of 6 personalities Apa Sherpa, Anil Chitrakar, Mahabir Pun, Bir Bahadur Ghale , Pusha Basnet and Pushkar Sah.
Kids Art : We are showcasing and launching the art/painting prepared by Shreeya Pokhrel and Rawdeep Pokhrel titled Colorful Brain
StoryCycle based in USA and Nepal (a storytelling platform that encourages people from grassroots to tell their stories and bring change in society) organised a series of events in the USA. We organised “Apa Sherpa and Stories from Everest” in California in February 2015 and “Stories from Epicenter and Beyond” in Washington DC in October 2015
Fort Worth Community Arts Center
1300 Gendy Street | Fort Worth TX 76107
338 Samudayeek Marga, Tinkune, Kathmandu,
808 Deckett Drive, Euless, Texas 76039
Climate Trek 2017 will be a two-week journey where the trekker will witness first hand experience of climate change in the Khumbu region and observe how communities are being impacted and how they are adapting to these changes. Climate Trek 2016 will have trekkers from all over the world ranging from activist to researchers.
Experienced team from story cycle, Digo Bikas Institute and Climax Adventure will accompany the trekkers. The trekkers will share their stories and observation in different platform provided by the organizing team.
Day 1 : Oct 3 - Briefing about the Climate Trek (1450 M)
Day 2: Oct 4 - Fly to Lukla and Trek to Phakding (Lukla 2800 M , Phakding 2600 M)
Day 3: Oct 5 - Phakding to Namche (3400 M)
Day 4 : Oct 6 - Trek to Phungi Thanga (3500 M)
Day 5 : Oct 7 - Trek to Pangboche (3800 M)
Day 6 : Oct 8 - Trek to Dingaboche ( 4300 M)
Day 7 : Oct 9 - Dingboche to Chhukung (4600 M)
Day 8 : Oct 10 - Trek to Imja Lake Via Chukhung ( 4800 M)
Day 9 : Oct 11 - Trek to Lobuche Via Dhukla (5000 M)
Day 10 : Oct 12 - Trek to GorakShep to Everest Base Camp (GorakShep5100 M, EBC 5364 M)
Day 11 : Oct 13 - Climb to Kalaphattar and Trek to Pheriche (KalaPhattar 5600 M, Pheriche 4250M)
Day 12 : Oct 14 - Trek to Namche(3440 M)
Day 13 : Oct 15 - Trek to Phakding(2600 M)
Day 14 : Oct 16 - Trek to Lukla(2800M)
Day 15 : Oct 17 - Fly Back to Kathmandu
Foreigners: 2600 USD
South Asian: 1600 USD
Nepali: 90,000 NPR
Climate Expert team member
Airport pickup and drop
Vehicle arrangement for Sightseeing in Kathmandu and Lalitpur
Return flight from Kathmandu to Lukla
Twin Share accommodation, breakfast, Lunch and dinner in 3 star hotel for 3 days in Kathmandu
Twin Share accommodation, breakfast, Lunch and dinner in tourist standard hotel during Everest Climate trek
Experienced tour leader, who was part of eco- Everest expedition and Everest base camp Government of Nepal, Cabinet meeting
Local English Speaking guide
All entrance fees and national park permits as per itinerary and trekking information management system (TIMS)
Porters (one porter between two)
Water on trekking days
Climate Trek 2017 will be a two-week journey where the trekker will witness first hand experience of climate change in the Khumbu region and observe how communities are being impacted and how they are adapting to these changes. Climate Trek 2016 will have trekkers from all over the world ranging from activist to researchers.
Experienced team from story cycle, Digo Bikas Institute and Climax Adventure will accompany the trekkers. The trekkers will share their stories and observation in different platform provided by the organizing team.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who should join the Everest Climate Trek 2016
Anyone who is passionate or interested about climate change issues and interested to trek in the Himalayas can join the trek.
If you are interested to have first hand experience on climate change, know more on how are communities in the Khumbu region being impacted and how are communities adapting to climate change, than this is the life time opportunity for you.
During this trip we will meet and interact with local communities, see glacier and glacier lakes, see the majestic view of the Everest and the Himalayan mountain range.
2. What is not included in the cost
· Return flight to country of origin to Kathmandu
· Battery Charge
· Hot Shower*
· Personal expenses ( internet, alcohol, cold drinks and water)
· Phone calls
· Laundry services
· Personal insurance
· Tips to guides and porters
· Everest mountain flight
3. How difficult is the trek?
Trek to Everest base camp and Imja glacier is ranked 5/5 ( challenging). Everest Climate trek is physically challenging, you need to be fit and train weeks before starting the trek. Our team will share the details on training once you confirm your participation for the trek.
4. Where do I register?
For registration please click on this link :
5. What does the typical day during ECT will be?
Every day during the trek we will interact with the local communities and visit different places like meteorological station, eco-clubs, renewable energy facilitated center.
6.Who should I contact for further information regarding ECT-2016.
For more information regarding Everest Climate Trek please email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
7. Does the organizing team have previous experience of organizing similar kind of event. ?
Climax Adventure team have organized and led numerous to Everest region and also lead the Eco- Everest Expedition and Government of Nepal cabinet meeting at Everest Base camp ahead of the Copenhagen climate Conference.
In 2015, Story Cycle, worked with Google and the Apa Sherpa Foundation to improve the digital map of Khumbu region, collected 360-panoramic images and overlay them with the stories of the Sherpa people as part of a cultural mapping project.
8. I have made a payment but have to cancel due to unforeseen circumstances, will I refunded?
You need to communicate with the organizing team members and after reviewing the cost organizing will refund the cost except the registration fee.
Contact Details :
Samudayeek Marga, House No. 338,
Tinkune, Kathmandu, Nepal.
Ride to SindhuliGadhi is a 153 KM Cycling journey from kathmandu to sindhuligadhi where will celebrate the 250th anniversary of the Sindhuligadhi battle Victory. The event will be of 2 Night and 3 Days . Day 1: Kathmandu to Khurkot - 111 Km Day 2: Khurkot to SindhuliGadhi to SindhuliMadi - 42 Km Day 3 : SindhuliMadi to Kathmandu The Project will contribute towards preservation and promotion of the historical heritage fort by collating information, designing it, and disseminating to a wider audience in order to promote tourism to the area the economic status of the locals. The project will focus its activities towards fulfilling two chief goals: increasing Sindhuligadhi's visibility to the wider audience, and improving visitor experience in Sindhuligadhi.
Take a look at our video of our succesful event "Ride to Sindhuligadhi 2016".
Participants : 250 Cycle Ride
Participants Entry :
Male : 3500 /-
Female : 3000/-
Others : 3000/-
International : 135$
The Cycling event was campaigned to promote sindhuligadhi as a tourist destination as 2016 was declared “ghumfir year”. Sindhuli Fort (Sindhuli Gadhi) commemorates the victory of the Nepali troops over the East Indian Army Led by Kinloch in the year 1770. It was the first defeat for the British troops in South Asia. A victory festival is being held in the Gadhi on November 09, this year.
Cyclists gathered including Puskar Shah at Nepal Tourism Board for Inaguration of Ride to Sindhuligadhi 2016.
Attractions of Journey to Sindhuli Gadhi:
1. A very pleasant highway ride with a great diversity of terrains to be watched throughout the way (views ranging from the Himalayas to inner Terai)
2. A great view from the ‘gadhi’ itself. The gadhi boasts a view of the snow-peaks in the north and Terai in the south.
3.Pleasant homestay, where one can enjoy traditional food and hospitality together with greater sharing about the history of the events that took place around 250 years ago.
4. It is a campaign that facilitates travel to beautiful exotic locations those are usually overlooked.
Contact Details :
Samudayeek Marga, House No. 338,
Tinkune, Kathmandu, Nepal.
StoryCycle, the lead this event with Nepal Tourism Board, Sindhuligadhi Protection Committee, interested travel and tour associations and operators, Sindhuli District Development Committee, locals living around the Sindhuligadhi area, and any other groups interested and willing to commit for the collaboration in the common cause.
महावीर पुन संग सम्वनधीत बिभिन्न सामाग्रीहरु संकलन गरिएकाे छ । यि सामाग्रीहरु स्राेत खुलाएर पून प्रयाेग गर्न सकिने छ ।
फाेटाे बादल/ ज्ञवाली स्टाेरी साइकल
स्केच रविन्द्र मानन्धर
Ms. Laxmi Giri can be considered as one of the happiest farmers at her village due to her knack to bring changes into her life in general and family in particular. Her neighbour says, she has a magic at her hands mainly to grow/produce various off season vegetables at her farmland. Just with a small patch of land, it is remarkable to see her making fortunes, winning laurels and becoming an inspiration for other group members at her village. She is one of many farmers in Pragatisheel Mahila Krisak Samuha (Progressive Women Farmer Group) of Badalkot-1 Baratu, a village in the Kalikot district, who has made a sound return from off-season vegetable production.
Ms. Giri proudly shows her 2.15 ha small farm full of vegetables (tomato, potato, cauliflower, chillies and radish). She explained the story of how a small patch of land became a way of better living for four member’s family. She adds “The maize, wheat and barley could hardly feed my family for two-three months,” and her husband was compelled to work as a wage labourer for many years just to make ends meet.
Laxmi and her husband, both are poorly literate. They hardly can read and write and living under extreme poverty in such circumstances had pushed laxmi into the verge of misery. She was doing vegetable farming for household consumption along with other crops such as maize, wheat and barley. She adopted vegetable farming as a business once the group- Pragatisheel Mahila Krisak Samuha she involved receive support under High Value Agriculture Programme (HVAP). Then, she started participating in various trainings as vegetable production, pest and disease management including marketing that changed her from subsistence to commercial. She says, “I have received improved seeds (off season-Tomato, Cucumber, Cauliflower, Chillies and Bitter Gourd) and financial supports through the group”. She adds, she earned NRs.35,080 by selling vegetables during the year. My family’s happiness knew no bound during that time. The earnings gave new inspiration to my family and it has even encouraged my husband to pursue it further. The next year observed sharp increase in my income to NRs 55,800 only from vegetable production. It offered me more motivation to engage in vegetable farming. Since then, I have never looked back in life because it makes me feel like I found my happiness in my vegetable garden. I continued to raise my production levels 610 kg to 1700 kg per season and generate more earnings, helping me to educate my children. Most importantly, I have renovated my house which increased our social status. Now, it looks new, strong and quite beautiful life. The off season vegetable farming business has now become a main source of income of ours. “Me and my husband truly enjoy working together in the farm, she reveals”.
Most similar with the story of Laxmi Giri, there are other 36 progressive women farmers involved on commercial vegetable production with the support of HVAP where they earn from NRs. 40,000 to 1,000,00 in a season.
As she believes, with support comes success and success brings happiness and prosperity. These remarkable successes from the Baratu, Kalokot prove that when women are economically and socially empowered, they can become a potent force for change poverty reduction. However, they cannot do it alone. What they need is inspiration that comes as a way of investment and support for agricultural and rural development, creating favorable conditions for the rural people to move out of subsistence farming toward commercial marketplace. In context of HVAP’s Inclusive Business Approach, two things have become increasingly evident; the first is that farming at any scale is a business, and smallholders and producers must be treated as entrepreneurs. The second is that promotion of women friendly farming practices can endorse growth and opportunities for livelihood promotion, thereby reducing poverty, food insecurity, vulnerability and inequality in rural areas. When these links are in place, wonderful things begin to happen.
While analysing the district wise context in Nepal, Jumla is one of the remote mountainous district facing massive post-harvest losses especially on Apple. For the livelihood subsistence, apple is the most important crop in terms of area, production and household economy in Jumla. But most production units are small and often located in isolated and inaccessible areas where infrastructure such as roads, irrigation and storage facilities are inadequate or completely lacking. With the present increasing trend in the connectivity (road network) in remote high mountains and inaccessible districts such as Mustang, Jumla and Kalikot, there is a great potential for increasing area and productivity of these fruit crops.
Among them, on farm storage of fruits and vegetables (mainly apple) was a major concern in Jumla from value addition prospect. Maintenance of temperature and humidity is a great problem in a mountainous region. In fact, Nepal has been struggling to make radical progress in the field of food preservation (building of cellar store, cold storage, modern collection center,etc;) where R&D in this field has been less. Refrigeration is energy intensive, expensive, not so easy to install and run in remote areas and not always environment friendly. Due to lack of cellar store, substantial amount of apple used to decay after production in Jumla. Market price was not so encouraging.
Hence realizing the critical aspect of apple production, High Value Agriculture Project (HVAP) planned to established apple cellar store at Jumla district. Considering acute energy crisis, the project design and build an economical, eco-friendly, effective and efficient zero energy cellar (a structure which is designed to keep mainly apple then vegetables and some fruits at a stable, temperature and humidity which will prevent them from rotting) by using renewable source of energy (earth) for the community for preserving their farm products for their future use. Hence, the project established zero energy cellar stores at 3 different groups/cooperates i.e. at Mahila Falful Tarkari Krisak Samuha at Taliom, Omgad, Danfe Kalika Krishi Bahuudesiya Sahakarki at Karthik Swami, and Mahila Krishi Bahuudesiya Sahakari Orthu Patmara in Jumla. These constructed units on these area consist interior wall is actually a double wall. Between the two walls there is a layer of gravel and sand. The perimeter of the roof is lined with water pipes. When the water is turned on, it drips down into the sand, which retains the moisture and brings the temperature inside the building down by just a few degrees.
It’s this small temperature and humidity change that makes a big difference. Amazingly, fruit especially apple stored in Zero-Energy units stays fresh for additional five to six months, allowing farmers to sell it well after the harvest period, garnering more profit.
Zero Energy cold storage units are one major part of an overall apple value chain intervention of the project that has directly benefitted 100 households from 3 particular groups and cooperative in Jumla. Ms. Ramila Bhandari (Picture above), is one of the beneficiary who is a pioneer apple producer and active group member of Kalika Krisi Bahuudesiya Sahakari at Kartik Swami, Jumla. According to her, it was very difficult for them to sell apple in local market in the past. They had a practice of feeding unsold apple to their livestock, offering to neighbour and forceful consumption as a main food item. “We had to wait a whole day to sell one doko (30-40 kg) apple and even if, we find someone to buy though the price used to me very nominal (Rs. 10-15 per kg)” she responded. “Now, the project constructed apple cellar store in our group where majority of us (24 households) store apple. I have stored 1.8 tons apple for 4 months and now I have sold NRs. 120 per kg is which is significantly higher than the seasonal price (normal seasonal price-Nrs. 20-25). It is hard to believe”, as she mentioned.
“This is particular change that we found at the individual household level through establishment of cellar store. In addition to this, we have found remarkable changes on apple orchard management, process of consultation with district and project based technician for technical support and increasing apple farm production,” says Mr. Gopal Prasad Shrestha, HVAP, Agriculture Technician. “In an average, each household has been earning Nrs. 20,000 to Nrs. 25,000 from the apple stored in cellar store”, he further adds.
So while the farmer/producer they can’t go back and reclaim their loss of the past. What we can assure that they can recover their loss in the present with increasing volume of production and with effective use of cellar store which increase their net income in general and build better futures particular.
A few degrees make a big difference for Apple Producers in Jumla, Nepal- A Case Study of Zero Energy Cellar Store Promoted by High Value Agriculture Project26 Jul 2016 in GreenGrowth by Saurav
Jajarkot, is one of the highly war faced district from decades long Maoist war in Nepal. Even within Jajarkot district, People from Jyamire Village Development Committee (VDC) faced all sorts of torture i.e. physical and mental torture from the both sides (Maoist and Government) of people. “Life was miserable and they were kept like a prisoners within their own home. Police and army used to come and go torturing till the last breath and Maoist used to come and go looting everything” ; says, Man Bahadur Rana. Now, they do not have single second to think about those terrible moment as they keep doing busy to cultivate vegetables.
Mr. Man Bahadur Rana was the first to initiate production of vegetable as a commercial basis in Jyamire VDC where approx. 18 households residing. I became like an idiot and people considered me as if I have lost my mind when I first converted my paddy and maize fields into vegetable area. People made fun at me saying that conversion of productive land for paddy and maize is my stupid idea and my initiation to produce vegetable will be effortless” utters, Man Bahadur. Now, the time has changed and with the run of time, community people exposed with ground reality. People learned from him to be the commercial vegetable producers. Approx. all the households of Jyamire being involved in commercial production of seasonal and off season vegetable. “Now, almost all the households earning NRs. 50-60 thousands by selling vegetables in one season” says, Ms.Bhabita Rana. “We have been gaining far better income from vegetable production comparing to our efforts and investments that we used to do for maize and paddy production” says, Ms. Rana cheerfully. “We could hardly be sustained from the production of paddy and maize. Now, we have handful of cash that even can be saved while sufficiently spending for schooling kids, buying cloths, purchasing meat and food items” further elaborate, Ms. Rana
It even did not take a year to recover them from the trauma. As a saying like “Good Intention Always Needs a Little Push” High Value Agriculture Project (HVAP) came up as a push factor into their life to bring a progressive change. In the year 2014, the project provided small grant (Post Production Fund-PPF) with of amount of NRs. 2,90,000 for commercial vegetable production. They have shown such a remarkable changes on production and improve livelihoods from such small support. Further commercialization and collective production and marketing, the project provided value chain fund of NRs. 7 Lakh 46 Thousand.
Now, each individual houses increased their land of production from 2-5 ropani where each individual houses earning 50-60 thousands in one season. Increased income from the not only increased their income but also improved their food culture. As an example, the initiator- Mr. Man Bahadur Rana and rest of the people used to eat rice and breads with salt and chillies. Now, the fresh vegetable can been seen cooking during lunch and dinner. Mr. Rana has been producing vegetables in 5 ropani land from which he is earning more than 3 Lakh in a year. With this income, he added 14 ropani land in potential area of Khalanda-Rimna road corridor.
Marketing of vegetables is major constraints in Jyamire due to difficulty of road connection. Currently, they are selling vegetables in closest market at Rimna on their own. Selling individually while carrying in a Doko is a time consuming, says Rana. Hence, the entire group of people struggling to connect their village with road and increasing vegetable production land so the regional traders at Surkhet could come and proceed for bulk trading in their locality.
Goat as a small ruminants is highly potential for smallholder farmers in terms of raising income and uplifting livelihoods. The presented case study entails the story of Ms. Kalpana Devi Bayak-39, a mother of 4 children from Turmakhad VDC-9, Achham district. The region itself belongs to resource poor area and geographically isolated from all the means of development where the story of Kalpana Devi is much more awful.
Raring of small ruminants and cattle farming is not new for Kalpana Devi and other community people. At the beginning, she had 5-7 goats which can be counted as main source of income. Income from the goats was not sufficient and she had to look for other labour work to feed her kids.
Her story on the commercial goat farming starts when Thulo Community Forest User Group (TCFUG) approached to High Value Agriculture Project (HVAP) on Goat Value Chain Sub-Project with the close coordination and facilitation of WAC Nepal two years ago. Journey of her involvement on various social development activities has begun then after.
She got support for goat shed management, vaccination and involvement on Business Literacy Class that groomed her to be a successful goat entrepreneurs. She had 15 goats when she thought she would be doing goat farming as a business. Now, she has more than 50 goats from which she has been earning handful amounts of money. Only this year, she earned approx. NRs. 200,000.00 (in words: Two Lakh) from goats and still she has got 35 goats left at her sheds. From these days, she does not have to look for buyers anymore because she found market at her own shed as the traders from various places such as Surkhet, Nepalgunj and even from Pokhara her goat farm. She says, she can earn more than 2 lakhs per year from the goats. Currently, goat market is getting bigger and bigger, it even supply to Kathmandu from her places. “Life became much easier”, as she said. To manage basis needs and necessity such as schooling to her kids, managing family health and buying necessary things became ease for her. Currently, her son is studying in Surkhet and regularly medical check-up her daughter who has health problem since long is being managed from the goat income.
.“Now, she became a means of inspiration at her village. She even encourages others to do similar business so as to improve living condition”, as mentioned by her community.
Photos: Devaki Bista
Far West region is renowned for remoteness in Nepal where district can be considered as a showcase of remoteness due to its difficult geographical condition, extreme poverty and isolate from eyes of development. Until few last years, due to lack of irrigation, inputs and technical know-how of commercial vegetable farming, majority of the land used to be cultivated by maize in one season and grazing land for rest of the season.
As said, change comes with development when development organizations were sprouting in Achham and the slow growth of change seen at Badakhola. In the year 2013/2014, when Helvitas- Nepal and District Agriculture Development Office (DADO) Achham, supported 3 water collection ponds then WAC Nepal (LNGO) facilitated Badakhol Farmer Group to approach with High Value Agriculture Project (HVAP) to support on commercial vegetable farming. In the same year, HVAP provided PPF fund to group to produce off season vegetables.
The progressive improvements in farming systems and livelihood mechanism seen at Badakhola through improvement in agriculture infrastructure, enhancing skills/technologies (plastic house, pipe irrigation, preparation of organic manuring, ease access on farming tools, developing marketing mechanism, promoting off season vegetables and technical trainings, etc.) at the subsistence level to successively improved on the existing farming practices. They found changed on their mind-set and did some revolutionary workout such as controlled on haphazard grazing, convereted barren/abandoned land into vegetable pocket areas. From such key factors of progression, it was very urgent and important that another intervention approaches should be in like to shift them from semi-commercial to commercial. Hence, they were able to secure value chain fund (VCF) W2.
The intervention approaches has become very effective since the project areas was largely dominated by smallholder, resource poor and marginalized farmers (12 Dalit, 3 Janajati and 67others – Total 82) who were suffering from less production and low income from their farming practice, were lacking in irrigation, transportation, market information, mechanisms, basic inputs (seeds, seedlings, tools) and improved technology as well. At the beginning, the 25 group members initiated vegetable farming on 15 ropani land under PPF fund. After conversion into VCF fund, total 51 group members producing various off season vegetable products such as cauli, cabbage, tomato on 62 ropani of land. On the first season, they earned NRs. 11822 selling 15610 kg vegetables. Now, they seems very well organized and well equipped as 10 households improved manuring, 25 households producing organic pesticide as they have constructed 15 plastic house, and 4 spray tank, 25 hajari is in group.
“The successes of VCF fund shift majority of farmers into commercial off season vegetable production that increased food-security at households’ level, facilitated access to finance, increased investments in agriculture, and further strengthened market linkages. Most importantly, the project was also crucial in connecting farmers to microfinance institutions for access to credit, supporting the purchase of irrigation equipment, and reinforcing agricultural best practices”, says Prem Buda, Chairperson of the Group.
सिन्धुली, ९ फागुन – वैशाख १२ को विनासकारी भूकम्पले ग्रामीण क्षेत्रका अधिकांश कच्ची घर भत्किए । घर क्षति भएपछि सरकारी राहतको आशामा १० महिनादेखि त्रिपाल र टेन्टमा बसिरहेका भूकम्पपीडित यतिबेला आफैं घर निर्माणमा जुटेका छन् ।
भूकम्पले ढुंगा र माटोका कमजोर संरचनाका घरमा धेरै क्षति पुगे पनि भत्किएका घर बनाउन सरकारले ठोस कदम नचालेपछि ग्रामीण क्षेत्रमा पुरानै पद्धतिमा घर बनाउन थालिएको हो । भूकम्पबाट क्षतिग्रस्त भौतिक संरचनाको पुनर्निर्माणका लागि सरकारले पुनर्निर्माण प्राधिकरण गठन गरे पनि भूकम्पपीडितको आशाअनुरुप काम अघि नबढ्दा गाउँ–गाउँमा पुरानै शैलीमा ढुंगा र माटोको घर बनाउन थालिएको छ ।
“सरकारले घर बनाउन सहयोग गर्छ र भूकम्प प्रतिरोधी प्रविधिबाट घर बनाउँला भनेको, त्रिपालमै जिन्दगी जाला जस्तो भो ! जाडो त जसोतसो झेलियो तर अब बर्खा यसरी कटाउन सकिन्न,” भुवनेश्वरी–८, मुर्कीबेँसीका गोपाल बयलकोटी भन्छन्, “पुरानै घरका काठपात प्रयोग गरेर घर बनाउन थालेको छु ।”
भूकम्प गएको एक वर्ष बित्न लाग्दा पनि पुनर्निर्माण अघि नबढेकाले सरकारले दिने भनेको २ लाख राहतको आस उनीहरूलाई छैन । “गोठमा गाईबस्तुसँग बस्न नसकिने रहेछ,” बासेश्वर–३, बलेनीका ध्रुव आछामीले भने, “२ लाख कुर्नुभन्दा आफैंले गाउँघरकै सीप प्रयोग गरी भत्केकै घरका काठपात प्रयोग गरेर हल्का घर निर्माण गर्न लागेको छु ।” सरकारको बाटो हेरिरहे त २–४ वर्ष त्रिपालमा बस्नुपर्ला जस्तो लाग्न थालेको आछामीले बताए ।
बयलकोटी र आछामी उदाहरण पात्र मात्र हुन् । जिल्लाका अधिकांश भूकम्पपीडित आफैं इन्जिनियर बनेर आफ्नै नक्सामा घर बनाउन थालेका छन् । भूकम्पले क्षति पुर्याएका भौतिक संरचना पुरानै शैलीमा बनाउँदा फेरि आइपर्नक्ने विपत्तिमा जनधनको क्षति पुग्नेतर्फ कसैको ध्यान जान नसकेको जिल्लास्थित सरोकारवाला बताउँछन् ।
भूकम्पपीडितले आफ्नै तरिकाले बनाएका घर भूकम्प प्रतिरोधी छन् कि छैन् भनेर कसरी नाप्ने ? सबैको प्रश्न छ । परम्परागत रूपमा घर बनाउने सीप भएका सिकर्मी र डकर्मीलाई यतिबेला गाउँमा भ्याइनभ्याइ भएको बेला सरकारको भूकम्प प्रतिरोधी घर बनाउने योजना विफल हुने धेरैको बुझाइ छ ।
ग्रामीण भेगमा पुगेन नक्सा
घर पुनर्निर्माणमा सरकारले २ लाख सहयोग गर्ने कुरा सुनेका भूकम्पपीडितलाई भूकम्प प्रतिरोधी घरका नक्सा वितरण गर्ने, प्राविधिककै रेखदेखमा घर निर्माण गर्नुपर्ने र सरकारले १७ वटा भूकम्प प्रतिरोधी घरहरूका नक्सा जिल्ला–जिल्लामा पठाएको थाहा छैन । ग्रामीण क्षेत्रका अधिकांशले घर पुनर्निर्माण गर्दा सरकारले लागू गरेको मापदण्ड पालना भएमात्र २ लाख रुपैयाँ किस्ताबन्दीमा पाइने पनि थाहा पाएका छैनन् ।
नक्सा र २ लाख वितरणबारे यथार्थ जानकारी नदिँदा भूकम्पपीडितमा निराशा छाएको छ । रानीचुरीकी लोककुमारी रायलाई सरकारले ल्याएको १७ वटा घरको नमुना नक्साबारे कुनै जानकारी छैन । “गाउँमा नक्सा आइपुगेको छैन,” उनले भनिन्, “प्राविधिक आउने हल्लामात्र सुनेकी छु ।”
कमलामाई नगरपालिका–१, कुडुँलेका सितारामप्रसाद देवकोटाले त नगरपालिका कार्यालय आउँदासमेत नक्सा हेर्न पाएनन् । नगरपालिकामा नक्सा हेर्न माग्दा ‘गाउँमै आउँछ’ भनेर उनलाई फर्काइदिए । विकट बस्ती र ग्रामीण क्षेत्रका मात्र होइन, पुनर्निर्माणमा सरकारले दिने भनेको आर्थिक राहतको अन्योलले सदरमुकाममा रहेको नगरपालिकामा समेत घर निर्माण गर्न नक्सा कसैले लिएका छैनन् । नगरपरिषद्ले नगरपालिका क्षेत्रमा भूकम्पपीडितले मापदण्डअनुसारका आवास निर्माण गर्नुपर्ने नीति कडाइसाथ लागू गर्न जोड दिने निर्णय गरे पनि खासै प्रभावकारी हुन सकेको छैन ।
सरकारले भनेजस्तो घर २ लाखले बन्दैन : भूकम्पपीडित
सरकारले दिने भनेको २ लाख रुपैयाँले घर बनाउन नसकिने भूकम्पपीडित बताउँछन् । कमलामाई नगरपालिका–५ का लालबहादुर बुढाथोकीले भूकम्पले पूर्णरूपमा ध्वस्त बनाएको घर भत्काउनमात्र १ लाखभन्दा बढी लाग्ने बताए । “आफ्नै तरिकाले घर बनाउन त २ लाखभन्दा बढी लाग्छ,” उनले भने, “सरकारले भनेअनुसार बनाउन त कम्तीमा १० लाख लाग्ला ।” उनको १०–११ जनाको परिवार छ ।
वडा नं. ५ कै मुना तामाङ पनि सरकारले दिने भनेको २ लाखले घर बनाउन नपुग्ने बताउँछिन् । “नपुग पैसा थप्न पनि जायजेथा नभएका हामीजस्तो गरिबले सकिँदैन, अनि कसरी सरकारले भनेजस्तो घर बनाउन सकिन्छ, त्यति पैसामा ?” उल्टै उनले प्रश्न गरिन् । नक्सा देखेका भीमेश्वर–८, बाराहाका डुनीराज नेपालीले पनि २ लाखमा सरकारले भनेजस्तो घर बनाउन नसकिने बताए ।
स्थानीय सीपको आवश्यकता
सिन्धुलीका भूकम्पपीडितलाई सरकारले ल्याएको नक्साअनुसारको घर बनाउनेभन्दा पनि स्थानीय स्रोत र साधनको प्रयोग गरी कसरी बलियो घर बनाउने भन्ने सीप आवश्यक छ । सिमेन्ट, बालुवाभन्दा पनि आफ्नै गाउँघरका ढुंगा, माटो, पुराना काठ र भत्किएका घरका सामग्री प्रयोग गरेर गुणस्तरीय घर बनाउन सीप आवश्यक रहेको पुरानो झागाँझोली गाविसका पूर्णबहादुर बसेल बताउँछन् । “सक्नेले त सरकारले तयार गरेको नक्साअनुसार र भनेजस्तो घर बनाउलान् तर हामीजस्तो नसक्नेले कसरी बनाउनू ?” उनले भने, “हामीलाई अरूभन्दा पनि सस्तो र राम्रो घर बनाउन सक्ने सीप दियो भने आफैं घर बनाउँछौं ।” २ लाखभन्दा सीप सिकाइदिए गरिबले पनि राम्रो घर बनाउन सक्ने उनको भनाइ छ ।
धेरै भूकम्पपीडित छुट्ने सम्भावना
भूकम्पपीडितको घर हेर्न र २ लाख किस्ताका लागि सिफारिस गर्न गाउँ–गाउँ पुगेका इन्जिनियरले ल्याएको तथ्यांकलाई अन्तिम तथ्यांक भनिरहँदा जिल्लाका धेरै भूकम्पपीडित छुट्ने सम्भावना पनि छ । दिउँसो कोही पढ्न जाने त कोही काम गर्न बाहिर जाने हुँदाले छुट्नसक्ने देखिएको हो । दुईजना मात्र परिवार रहेका भुवनेश्वरीका शम्भु श्रेष्ठलाई २ लाख पैसा नआउने हो कि भन्ने चिन्ता छ । “कतिखेर इन्जिनियर आउने हुन्, त्यसबेला आफू घरमा भइन्छ कि भइन्न,” उनले भने, “इन्जिनियरले सिफारिस नगरे २ लाख नपाइएला, सधैं घर बसिरहँदा पनि काम हुँदैन ।” इन्जिनियर गाउँ आउनुभन्दा १–२ दिनअघि नै जानकारी दिनुपर्ने आग्रह अधिकांश पीडितको छ ।
नक्सा गाउँ–गाउँ पुगिसक्यो : भवन निर्माण कार्यालय
भूकम्पपछि मात्र जिल्लामा कार्यालय स्थापना गरेको सहरी विकास तथा भवन निर्माण कार्यालयले पुनर्निर्माणमा आएका संघ–संस्थालाई सरकारबाट लागू गरिएका १७ वटा नक्सा वितरण गरिएको जनाएको छ । धेरै गाविसमा इन्जिनियर पनि खटाइसकेको कार्यालय प्रमुख अच्युतमप्रसाद खतिवडाले जानकारी दिए । इन्जिनियर गाउँ–गाउँमा पुग्ने उनले बताए ।
“नक्साअनुसार १ या २ तले घर निर्माण गर्न सकिन्छ,” उनले भने, “ढुंगा–माटो, ढुंगा–सिमेन्ट, इँटा–माटो र इँटा–सिमेन्टको घर तयार गर्न सकिन्छ ।” स्थानीय स्रोत र साधनलाई प्रयोग गरेर पनि घर बनाउन सकिने उनले जनाए । “तर नक्सा अनिवार्य फलो गर्नुपर्छ,” खतिवडाले भने ।
भवन निर्माणसम्बन्धी आचारसंहिताअनुसार ठ्याक्कै नभए पनि त्यस्तैखाले घर बनाउनुपर्ने उनको भनाइ छ । “घर बनाउँदा अनिवार्य नक्सा स्वीकृति लिनुपर्ने र तालिम प्राप्त सिकर्मी, डकर्मी लगाउनुपर्ने हुन्छ,” उनी भन्छन् । प्राविधिकले २ लाख रुपैयाँको किस्ता सिफारिस गर्ने हुँदा प्राविधिक टोलीले नहेरीकन घर नबनाउन खतिवडाले भूकम्पपीडितलाई आग्रह गरे ।
जिल्लामा भूकम्प प्रतिरोधी घर निर्माणका लागि नेपाल रेडक्रस सोसाइटी र सबल परियोजनाले दक्ष निर्माणकर्मी उत्पादनका लागि विभिन्न संघ–संस्थामार्फत तालिम सञ्चालन गरिरहेका छन् ।
नक्सा पास अनिवार्य
सरकारले साउनदेखि घर निर्माण गर्दा गाविसमा पनि अनिवार्य नक्सा पास गर्नुपर्ने व्यवस्था गरेको छ । अहिलेसम्म नगरपालिकाभित्र मात्र नक्सा पास अनिवार्य थियो । स्थानीय स्वायत्त शासन ऐन तथा नियमावलीलगायत भवन निर्माणसम्बन्धी आचारसंहितामा पनि गाविसमा घर निर्माण गर्दा नक्सा पास गर्नुपर्ने व्यवस्था भएको कार्यालयले जनाएको छ ।
आफूखुसी निर्माण गर्दा घर कच्चा हुने भएकाले नक्सा अनिवार्य गरिएको प्रमुख खतिवडाले बताए । “नेपाल भूकम्पीय उच्च जोखिममा रहेको र कुनै पनि बेला भूकम्प जानसक्नेप्रति सजग रहँदै सरकारले यस्तो व्यवस्था गर्न लागेको हो,” उनले भने ।
प्रकाशित मिति: फेब्रुअरी २१, २०१६ लेखक: चिना थापा कारोबारबाट साभार गरिएको । http://np.karobardaily.com/2016/02/76691/
Seeks recovery of Rs 27.1 million
As tens of thousands of people in Kathmandu spent their nights under makeshift shelters put together with tarpaulins and plastic sheeting in the weeks after the April 25 earthquake, a handful of government officials were engaged in serious irregularities, according to investigations carried out by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA).
The anti-graft body has so far brought charges of corruption against half a dozen civil servants and eight tarpaulin suppliers at the Special Court in two separate cases concerning the procurement of relief materials. The CIAA has sought to recover a combined amount of Rs 27.1 million from the accused.
Those charged include three officials of the Ministry of Urban Development who have been accused of setting up middlemen and working in cahoots with tarpaulin suppliers. They failed to make direct purchases from the main producers and suppliers, according to the charge sheet.
The investigation has also found that relief materials procured by the accused officials were of low quality, but they submitted bills for exorbitant amounts, claiming that the tarpaulins were of high quality. The cost of the materials was inflated by up to three times. The bill presented was for Rs 12 per square feet although the unit cost to the main supplier was only Rs 4, the CIAA said.
The officials bought a total of 27,678 tarpaulins worth about Rs 50 million and distributed these till May 2. They then purchased about 250,000 tarpaulins worth Rs 640 million through a procurement panel formed by Narayan Khadka, a former minister for urban development (MoUD).
Though the tarpaulins were procured in a hurry through a special decision of the cabinet on April 26, the procurement bills were prepared only on May 2, the day when the special procurement ended and a more formal procurement process was initiated by the panel.
The storekeeper and three other officials at MoUD had prepared a detailed record of the quality, size, quantity and unit price of the tarpaulins along with a receipt. Five suppliers including Hamsram Pandeya of the Federation of Nepalese Chamber of Commerce and Industry have also been charged.
The CIAA has seized all the procurement documents for investigation purposes.
The CIAA has also filed a case at the Special Court against three civil servants, including Local Development Officer of Kathmandu Tirtharaj Bhattarai, for paying bills that included customs tax although this latter had been waived. The loss to the state coffers was to the tune of Rs 3.5 million. Three other suppliers--Mithileshwor Tiwari of New Pashupati Trade and Suppliers, Jhamka Prasad Gautam of Dipesh Enterprises and Hom Prasad Gautam of Sebika Enterprises-- are also charged.
In a press release issued after the case filing, the CIAA said, “Civil servants were found shamelessly involved in raking in money instead of serving the earthquake victims.”
CIAA Spokesperson Krishna Hari Pushkar said the civil servants were bent on lining their pockets rather than providing relief to quake survivors.
“There was also delay for weeks in the delivery of relief materials,” added Pushkar.
Bharat Bahadur Thapa, Nepal chapter president of Transparency International (TI), said such depravity during an emergency period marked a new low in corruption in Nepal. “Some people thought it was OK to siphon off money meant for procuring relief materials,” said Thapa. “This was really unfortunate and it happened mainly because of weak governance and poor monitoring.”
Former minister Khadka, however, denied any intentional corruption in procurements by the civil servants. “All the procurements could not properly evaluate prices and quality in the time of crisis,” he said, adding that analyzing the real situation will yield a fairer picture and do justice to the civil servants.
Several relief material procurements in the aftermath of the earthquake are under the CIAA scanner, investigation officials said. But they did not divulge details.
Published Date: 24th Feb, 2016 Written By: Rudra Pangeni Published In: Republica http://www.myrepublica.com/feature-article/story/37660/ciaa-files-graft-charges-over-quake-relief-procurements.html
जब १६ वर्षीया पत्नी सरिता विकलाई व्यथा लाग्यो, उनका पति ईश्वर पनि छट्पटाउन थाले। जिल्लाको दुर्गम गुम्दा गाविस–५ माथिखोला घर भएका दलित दम्पत्ति सामु विकल्प धेरै थिएनन्। सुत्केरी गराउने केही सुविधा नभएको गाउँमा जोखिम मोलेरै परम्परागत रुपमा नै सुत्केरी गराउनुको विकल्प थिएन। ‘बाहिर लगौं भने गाडी छैन। हेलिकोप्टर मगाउँ पैसा छैन,’ ईश्वरले यही फागुन पहिलो साताको त्यो दिन सम्झिए, ‘के गरौं, कसो गरौं भयो। बडो गाह्रो। हाम्रो दुःख पीडा कसले बुझ्ने ? त्यसमा पनि चिसो ठाउँ।'
गुम्दामा रहेको स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा भेटिएका ईश्वरले १४ वर्षकै उमेरमा बिहे गरे। उनी आफ्नो पहिलो सन्तानको व्यग्रतापूर्वक प्रतीक्षा गरिरहेका थिए। तर, पत्नीको चार दिनदेखि दुखिरहेको पेटको उपचार त्यहाँको स्वास्थ्य चौकीका अहेवको बुताभन्दा बाहिरको कुरा थियो। ‘डाक्टर (अहेब) भन्दै छ, सक्नु हुन्छ भने सदरमुकाम गोरखा लिएर जानु। तर कसरी लिएर जाने यस्तो अवस्थामा ?’
गुम्दा स्वास्थ्य चौकीका प्रमुख अहेव दिलप्रसाद गुरुङ भन्छन्, 'सरिता विकको अवस्था अल जटिल नै देखिएको छ, गर्भवती महिलाको गर्भ परीक्षण गर्न मेसिन छैन। त्यही भएर अलिकति समस्या भएको हो।'
वैशाख १२ को बिनासकारी भूकम्पले धेरैलाई पीडा दियो। तर सहर बजारका अस्पतालहरु लगत्तै सुचारु भए पनि गाउँका स्वास्थ्य चौकी भत्किएका छन्। अधिकांशको पुनःनिर्माण त भएको छैन नै, दुरदराजका बिमारी कतिपय आधारभूत स्वास्थ्य सेवाबाट समेत बञ्चित छन्। उत्तरी गोरखाको उच्च हिमाली गाविसहरुमा कैयौ सुत्केरी तथा गर्भवती महिलाहरु सरिताको जस्तै पीडा भोगिरहेका छन् यतिबेला।
गत वैशाखको महाभूकम्पको केन्द्रबिन्दु (बारपाक) रहेको गोरखा जिल्लाका लाप्राक, गुम्दा, उइया लगायतका गाविसहरुमा बसोबास गरिरहेका सुत्केरी तथा गर्भवती महिलाहरु नियमित लगाउनु पर्ने खोपहरुबाट पनि बञ्चित छन् जसले गर्दा आमा र नवजात शिशु दुवैको स्वास्थ्यमा असर परिरहेको छ। भूकम्पले भत्काएका स्वास्थ्य चौकीहरुको पुनःनिर्माण नहुँदा र अस्थायी रुपमा टेन्टमुनि सञ्चालन रहेका स्वास्थ्य चौकीहरुमा पनि औषधी नहुँदा त्यहाँका स्वास्थ्यकर्मीहरुले घरेलु तरिकाबाट सुत्केरी गराइरहेका छन्।
गुम्दामा रहेको स्वास्थ्य चौकीका प्रमुख अहेव दिलप्रसाद गुरुङ भन्छन्, ‘एक वर्ष मुनिका २० जना सुत्केरी आमाहरु हाम्रो सम्पर्कमा छन्। सबै जना पालमा बस्छन्। स साना बच्चाहरु धेरै बिरामी हुन्छन् तर उनीहरुलाई दिने औषधी नै छैन हामीसँग।’
गुरुङले अझै थपे, 'खास गरी सुत्केरी र गर्भवती महिलाहरुलाई धेरै समस्या भएको छ। यहाँ पालमुनि सुत्केरी गराउनुपर्छ, औषधी केही छैन। घरेलु तरिकाबाट सुत्केरी गराउनुपर्छ।’ उनका अनुसार स्थानीयवासी बच्चाहरुलाई ज्वरो लाग्ने, खोकी लाग्ने, टाउको दुख्ने, निमोनिया लाग्ने, पखालाका बिरामी लिएर आउँछन् ।
भूकम्पपछि गुम्दामा कति जना महिलाहरु सुत्केरी छन् भन्ने स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा कुनै लिखित रेकर्ड त छैन तर अनुमानकै भरमा भूकम्प यता झण्डै ४० जना महिलाहरु सुत्केरी भएको गुरुङको भनाई छ।
उनका अनुसार जिल्ला र विभिन्न संघ/संस्थाहरुबाट भूकम्पपछि औषधीहरु त आए तर यहाँ कुन औषधीको आाश्यकता रहेको छ त्यो कुरा नबुझी जसलाई जे/जे मन लाग्यो त्यही/त्यही औषधी पठाए। गुरुङ भन्छन्, ‘त्यस्ता औषधीको यहाँ काम नै भएन। हामीसँग औषधी नहुँदा जन्मिने बित्तिकै बच्चाहरुलाई लगाउनु पर्ने बिसीजी खोप, छ सातापछि लगाउनु पर्ने डिपीटी, पोलियो र ९ महिनादेखि ३६ महिनासम्म लगाउनु पर्ने दादुराको खोप लगाउने काम भएन, केही बाहेक। औषधी ९ महिनादेखि लगाएको छैन दुई/चार वटा आयो तर त्यो सक्यो र फेरि नियमित आएन।’
माझ गाउँ घर भएकी २७ वर्षीया विष्णु गुरुङ। विष्णुले माघको अन्तिम साता छोरी जन्माइन् भूकम्पले भत्काएको घर र भत्किएकै घरमाथि बनाएको पालमूनि। विष्णुको पति संजिव गुरुङ गाउँमै पशुपालन गर्छन्।
संजिव छोरीलाई निमोनिया भएको आशंका गर्छन् तर जाच्ने कहाँ? ‘केही खाँदैन, अलिअलि ज्वरो आएपछि स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा लगेको थिएँ तर हरियो औषधी (सिटामोल) दिनुभयो डाक्टरले। ठीक नै भएन। अब के गर्ने ?’ यहाँ मानिस स्वास्थ्य चौकीको अहेवा वा अन्य सबै औषधी दिने कर्मचारीलाई डाक्टर भन्ने चलन छ।
‘बच्चा हुने बेलामा पनि धेरै समस्या भयो। घर भत्किएको छ। पालमुनि छोरीको जन्म भयो। चिसो पनि त्यस्तै छ, बच्चालाई बचाउनै गाह्रो भएको छ भने बच्चाको आमालाई खुवाउने पोशिलो कुरा केही छैन,’ संजिवले आफ्नो दुखेसो सुनाउँदै थिए।
त्यस्तै गुम्दा गाविस–४ यम गाउँकी २४ वर्षीया मनमाया गुरुङ पनि आफ्नो बच्चा कोक्रामा लिएर स्वास्थ्य चौकी परिसरमै भेटिइन्। छ महिनाको छोरालाई ज्वरो आएको झण्डै दुई साता भयो तर स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा लिएको औषधीले काम गरेको छैन। मनमाया गुरुङले हातमा रहेको औषधी देखाउँदै भनिन्, ‘औषधी खुवाएको छु तर काम गरेको छैन, छोरा जति बेला पनि रोइरहेको हुन्छ, चिसो पनि त्यतिकै रहेको छ। थप उपचारको लागि यत्रो साना बाबु लिएर कहाँ जाने ?’
गुम्दामा दुई ठाउँमा स्वास्थ्य चौकी थिए तर भूकम्पमा परी दुवै स्वास्थ्य चौकी भग्नावशेषमा परिणत भए। त्यसपछि गुम्दाका सिम्ला, यम गाउँ, लप्सीबोट, खानी वेसी, पुच्छार गाउँ, माझ गाउँ, सिरान गाउँका सर्वसाधारण स्वास्थ्य सेवाबाट वञ्चित हुँदै आएका छन्।
यता, लाप्राकको अवस्था पनि त्यस्तै छ। हुन त लाप्राकमा गुम्दाको तुलनामा केही बढी औषधी आएको छ तर अवस्था उस्तै। जोखिम मोलेर भए पनि अहिले लाप्राकसम्म सवारी साधन चलिरहेका छन्।
लाप्राकमा रहेको स्वास्थ्य चौकीका प्रमुख अहेव अनत गुरुङका अनुसार भूकम्प यता ४२ जना महिलाहरु सुत्केरी भएको र १२ जना अहिले गर्भवती जाँचको लागि आइरहेका छन्। अहेव गुरुङको पीडा सुनिनसक्नु छ। आफ्नै आँखा अगाडि गर्भवती दिदी बहिनीहरु छट्पटाइरहे पनि आफूले केही गर्न नसकेको उनी बताउँछन्।
उनी भन्छन्, ‘गर्भवती जाँच गर्ने केही मेसिन छैन, अनुमानकै भरमा जाँच गर्नुपर्छ। केही साताअघि सुत्केरीका लागि औषधीहरु मगाएको थिएँ तर अर्कै औषधी पो पठायो। सुत्केरी गराउनका लागि अति आवश्यक पर्ने सुत्केरी सामग्री पनि छैन। अनि कसरी सुत्केरी गराउने? तपाईँ आफै सोच्नुस्? हामी बाध्य भएर घरेलु तरिकाबाट सुत्केरी गराउँछौं।’
केयर नेपालका सामाजिक परिचालक किरण गुरुङको अनुभव गुरुङसँग सहमति जनाउछन्। भन्छन्, ‘औषधी नआएको होइन, तर यहाँ कुन औषधी पठाउने हो वा होइन त्यो कुरामा बिचार गर्नुपर्छ। अस्ति हामी फिल्डमा जाँदा त्यस्तै देखियो जुन बिरामी भएपनि सबै जनालाई स्वास्थ्य चौकीका डाक्टरले सिटामोल दिन्थे। म आफै दंग परेँ। यसो हेर्दा त अरु औषधी नै थिएन। डाक्टर बाध्य भएर सबैलाई सिटामोल बाँडिरहेका थिए।’ लाप्राक भन्दा माथिका मानिसहरु औषधी भन्दा पनि जडिबुटी नै प्रयोग गर्थे। तर अवस्था अहिले त्यस्तो छैन। जसलाई जेजे औषधी चाहिएको हुन्छ सदरमुकामबाटै किनेर आफै लैजान्छन् दुई महिना चार महिनाका लागि।
सिम्लामा भेटिएका उइया–२ का राजु गुरुङको कथा त झन् पीडादायी थियो। राजुले भने अनुसार लाप्राकसम्म त जोखिम मोलेर भए पनि सवारी साधन आउँछ र केही मात्रामा भए पनि औषधी आउँछ। तर उइयामा त्यो पनि छैन। ‘देश यहाँसम्म मात्र रहेछ, हाम्रो लागि होइन रहेछ। देश लाप्राक भन्दा माथिको नागरिकको लागि भएको भए सायद हामीले पनि सिटामोल पाउँथ्यौँ होला,’ उनले भने।
राजुले अझै थपे, ‘भूकम्पको समयमा हेलिकोप्टरहरु आएको थियो केही राहत लिएर त्यसपछि आएन। हामी तीन दिन हिँडेर सदरमुकाम गोरखाबजार पुग्छौं। हामीलाई भगवानले बचाएको हो सरकारले होइन। गाउँमा एउटा स्वास्थ्य चौकी त छ तर बन्द भएको धेरै भयो। त्यो स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा भूकम्पपछि डाक्टर आएको छैन, औषधी त धेरै टाढाको विषय हो।’ भूकम्प गएको झण्डै १० महिना भइसक्दा पनि आजसम्म कुनै खोपको कार्यक्रम उइयामा नगएको उनले बताए। राजुसँगै रहेका प्रतीक गुरुङका अनुसार सुरुमा नेपाली सेनाले औषधी वितरण गरेको थियो। तर अहिले औषधी नभएकाले घरेलु उपचार गरेर बच्चाहरु बिरामी पर्दा निको पार्ने गरेको बताए।
महँगै भए पनि सहर बजारमा स्वास्थ्य सुविधा उपलब्ध छ। तर विकट पहाडी भेगमा कष्टकर जीवन बिताइरहेका गाउँलेहरु आफ्नो थातथलो छाड्न तयार छैनन्। ‘जीवनभर कमाएको सबै कुरा यतै छ, अरु ठाउँ जाउँ भने कहाँ जाने? यहाँ बसौं भने कसरी बस्ने? दुःखै दुःख छ यता। सबै आउँछन्, सोधेर जान्छन् तर कसैले केही गरेको छैन,’ उनले भने।
जिल्ला जनस्वास्थ्य कार्यालय गोरखाका प्रमुख महेन्द्रध्वज अधिकारीले उइयामा रहेको स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा भूकम्प यता कर्मचारी नभएको स्वीकारे। ‘दुई साताअघि हामीले दुई जना स्वास्थ्यकर्मी पठाएका छौं। भूकम्पमा जिल्लाको ८० प्रतिशत स्वास्थ्य चौकी भत्किएको रहेको छ। त्यसको पुनःनिर्माण नहुँदा अहिले पालमूनि स्वास्थ्य चौकी सञ्चालन गरेको बताउँदै पालमूनिबाट स्वास्थ्य सेवा दिन धेरै समस्या भइरहेको छ,’ उनले भने।
उनीहरु उइया पुगेको हो वा होइन अहिले सम्पर्कमा नआएको उनले स्वीकारे। अधिकारीका अनुसार गोरखाको भौगोलिक बनावट दुर्गम र हिमाली भएको कारणले गर्दा केही उच्च हिमाली क्षेत्रतिर औषधी पठाउनमा समस्या भएको छ। तीन साता अघि गुम्दा र लाप्राक लगायतका गाविसहरुमा पहिलो चरणको खोपहरु पठाइसकेकाले औषधी नभएको अवस्था नरहेको जिकिर उनको थियो। ‘भूकम्प पश्चातको केही महिना र नाकाबन्दीको समयमा औषधीको समस्या भएकै हो तर अहिले त्यस्तो छैन, हिमाली केही गाविस बाहेक,’ प्रमुख अधिकारीको भनाइ थियो।
साथै उनले दुर्गम गाविसहरुबाट कुन औषधीको माग बढी छ र कुनको कम त्यसको बारेमा एकिन जानकारी नआएको कारणले जिल्लाबाट अनुमानकै भरमा औषधी पठाउनु पर्ने बताए। अहिले स्वास्थ्य चौकीको आफ्नो भवन नभएको कारणले पनि उपचारमा समस्या भइरहेको उनले स्वीकारे। हामीले जनस्वास्थ्यका प्रमुखलाई अहिले त्यस क्षेत्रमा कति महिला सुत्केरी रहेको भनेर सोध्दा त्यस क्षेत्रका मानिसहरु पहिला पनि स्वास्थ्य चौकमा कमै आउँथे, अहिले पनि त्यस्तै रहेछ भन्दै पन्छिए।
यता, स्वास्थ्य तथा जनसंख्या मन्त्रालयका प्रवक्ता महेन्द्र श्रेष्ठले अहिले कुनै ठाउँमा त्यस्तो हो भने तुरुन्त औषधी लिएर जान आजै जिल्ला जनस्वास्थ्य कार्यालयलाई निर्देशन दिने बताए। उनले भने, 'जहाँसम्म स्वास्थ्य चौकीमा कर्मचारी नबस्ने कुरा हो त्यसको बारेमा किन ती क्षेत्रमा उनीहरु नबसेको हो बुझ्नेछौं र दोषी पाए कारबाही हुनेछ।
उइया, गुम्दा, लाप्राक लगायतका गाविसहरुमा भूकम्पमा झण्डै एक सय नागरिकको ज्यान गएको थियो।
प्रकाशित मिति: बिहिबार, १३ फागुन २०७२
लेखक: सुभक महतो
पहिलोपोस्टबाट साभार गरिएको ।
धादिङ कटुन्जेकी सुनिता बिश्वकर्मा(३०)ले तीन छोराछोरीको लालनपालन र शिक्षादीक्षाबारे सोच्नु त परै जाओस्, जीविकोपार्जनको लागिसमेत कुनै मेलोमेसो पाउन सकेकी छैनन्।
गत बैशाख १२ को भुइँचालोले उनको सोच्ने ढंग, देख्ने सपना र जीवनशैली नै रातारात फेरिदिएको छ। पहिलाजस्तो उकालीओराली गर्नसक्ने शरीर छैन अब, न त बालबच्चालाई खुवाउन र स्कुल पठाउने हैसियत नै।
'छोराछोरीका पढाइ पनि बिग्रियो। मेरो भविष्य पनि बिग्रियो,' भृकुटी मण्डपस्थित अपांग कोषमा कृत्रिम खुट्टाले हिँड्ने अभ्यास गरिरहेकी बिश्वकर्माले भनिन्, 'अब कसरी दिन बिताउने? थाहा छैन। म त रनभुल्लमा छु।'
जिन्दगीमा उनी दोस्रोपालि हिड्न सिक्दैछिन्। बालखले जसरी हिड्न अभ्यासरत उनले अब हिड्न सिकेर आफूमात्र होइन, छोराछोरीका लागि समेत चारा खोज्नु छ। त्यसपछि तिनका आँखा खुलाउन स्कुल पनि पठाउनु छ। उनमै उनिएका छन् तीन स-साना चिचिलाका सपना र विपना पनि। तिनका खुसी र रहर पनि। तर तिनलाई पनि खुवाउने र स्कुल पठाउने कुनै मेलो उनीसित छैन।
अनिता(१२), मनिता (९), र अनिल(४) गरी उनका तीन बच्चा छन्। अनिता र मनिता गाउँकै सरकारी स्कुलमा पढ्थे। स्कुलसितको तिनको साइनो पनि भुइँचालोपछि जोडिएको छैन।
'कहाँ र कसरी पढाउने?' उनले सोच्नसमेत भ्याएकी छैनन्।
सुनिता गाउँमै खेतीपाती गर्थिन्। आफ्नो बारीका उब्जनीले खान पुग्दैनथ्यो। त्यसैले अधियाँ लाउँथिन्।
चार वर्षअघि अंश लिएर अलग भएका थिए। टीनले छाएको सानो बुकुरो बनाएर ओत लागेका थिए।
त्यसदिन भुइँचालो आएपछि उनी ज्यान जोगाउन भागिन्। तर, भाग्दाभाग्दै उनलाई नै ओत दिने घरको पर्खालले च्याप्यो।
घरसितै उनको बाया खुट्टा अनि उनका ससाना रहर र सपना पनि भत्के।
'अब के गरी खाने हो? थाहा छैन,' उनले भनिन्।
भुइँचालोले भौतिक संरचना मात्र भत्केनन्, सुनिताजस्तै धेरैले ठूलो मानवीय मूल्यसमेत चुकाए। मर्ने त मरिहाले तर शरीरका अंग तथा परिवारका सदस्य गुमाएकाको जिन्दगीमा एकाएक बदलाव ल्यायो, भुइँचालोले। पीडितका हिडाइ, बोलाइ फेरियो। जीवनशैली नै फेरियो। तिनले जिउने कला र देख्ने सपनामा आकाशपाताल भयो।
'भोलिका दिन सम्झेर म त बेहोसै हुन्छु। कतिपालि बेहोस भइसकेँ,' उनले भनिन्।
भूकम्पपीडितका लागि काम गर्ने एउटा संस्थाले उनलाई बालुवाटारमा ओत दिएको छ। त्यँहि बसेर हिँड्ने अभ्यास गर्न उनी दिनहुँजसो भृकुटीमण्डप पुग्छिन्। कहिलेसम्म हो? उनलाई थाहा छैन।
उनको गाउँ पहाडमा छ। कृत्रिम खुट्टाले उकालोओरालो सम्भव छैन। त्यसैले गाउँमा गएर उनले गर्न सक्ने काम छैन। तर, उनले जानेकै मेलापात र खेतीपाती हो। उनले जानेको उही काम उनीबाट बिरानो भयो। नोकरी गर्नलाई पढाइ छैन।
'गाउँ गएर जसोतसो गरौंला भन्ने आशा पनि बाँकी रहेन। हातले गर्ने काम पाए गर्न मन छ। कसैले सहयोग गरे सानो पसल थाप्न मन छ,' उनले भनिन्।
उनका पति बम्बई गएको तीन बर्ष भयो। मजदुरी गर्ने उनका पतिले बेलाबेला फोन गर्छन्। उनका पति अहिलेसम्म उनलाई भेट्न आएका छैनन्।
'मेरोभन्दा पनि बच्चाको माया लाग्छ। यिनले पढ्न पाए हुन्थ्यो भन्ने लाग्छ,' उनले दुखेसो पोखिन्।
राजधानी नजिक भए पनि उनी अहिलेसम्म घर फर्केकी छैनन्।
'चिनेजानेकाले के भन्लान्? कसरी देखिने उनीहरुसामु? के भो कुन्नि? मलाई त घर जान मन नै लाग्दैन,' उनले भनिन्।
उनले बेलाबेलामा सपना देख्छिन्। सपनामा ठमठम हिँडिरहेकी हुन्छिन्, गाउँमा। कहिले मेलापातमा काम गरिरहेकी हुन्छिन् भने कहिले घरमा।
'म त पहिलेकै गोडाले हिँडिरहेको हुन्छु, सपनामा। बिउँझेर रुन्छु,' उनले भनिन्।
नसोधी खुट्टा काटिएकोमा उनलाई गुनासो छ।
'बरु खुट्टा रहँदासम्म बाँच्थेँ। काट्न दिने थिइनँ,' उनले भनिन्।
टिचिङ अस्पतालमा उनी बिउझँदा उनको बाया खुट्टा काटिइसकेको थियो।
कृत्रिम खुट्टाले हिँड्न सक्छिन्। तर बेलाबेलामा समस्या आइरहन्छ। कहिले घाउ हुन्छ कहिले के। तीन/चार महिना अभ्यास गरेपछि बल्ल हिँड्न सिकेकी हुन्। उनी अझै अभ्यासरत छिन्।
पहिलोचोटी कृत्रिम खुट्टा लाउँदा उनी बेस्सरी रोएकी थिइन्।
'कहिले बिस्तारै मन बुझ्दैगएजस्तो लाग्छ। कहिले त सोच्छु, यस्तै रहेछ जिन्दगी,' उनले भनिन्, 'कहिले भने मर्न पाएको भए हुन्थ्यो भन्ने लाग्छ।'
दैलेखको बासी–३का रमेश खत्री(१८) ले दुवै खुट्टा गुमाए। सुनितासित कृत्रिम खुट्टाले हिँड्न अभ्यासरत खत्री बालाजुको एउटा गेष्टहाउसमा ग्राहक ल्याउने काम गर्थे। आठ पढेर रोजीरोटीका लागि भारत जाने गरेका उनी एक महिनाअघि मात्र काठमाडौं छिरेका थिए। होटल रहेको आठ तले घर भत्किँदा उनलाई बिमले लाग्यो। उनले दुवै खुट्टा गुमाए।
आमाबा, एक भाइ र एक बहिनीको लालनपालन उनकै भरमा अडेको थियो। दुई बर्षअघि बिहे गरेका खत्रीपत्नीले एक महिनाअघि मात्र सम्बन्धविच्छेद गरिन्।
दुवै खुट्टा गुमेकाले सुनितालाई भन्दा उनलाई गाह्रो छ, हिड्न।
'कसैले सहयोग गरे खगेन्द्र नवजीवनमा पढ्न मन छ,' उनले भने।
उनले आफूजस्तै साथीहरुलाई हेरेर मन बुझाउने गरेका छन्।
रमेश र सुनितालाई सरकारले के गर्छ? के छ सरकारको योजना? थाहा छैन। तैपनि कसैले सहयोग गरिहाल्छन् कि भनी उनीहरुले पर्खिरहँदा सरकारी निकाय भने एकअर्कोलाई जिम्मेवारी पन्छाइरहेका छन्।
गृहप्रवक्ता यादव कोइराला यो जिम्मेवारी स्वास्थ्य मन्त्रालयको भएको तर्क गरे। सेतोपाटीसँग उनले भने, 'हाम्रो जिम्मेवारी रेस्क्यु गर्ने हो। यो काम हामीले गरिसक्यौं। अब स्वास्थ्य मन्त्रालयले हेर्छ।'
तर, स्वास्थ्य मन्त्रालयका प्रवक्ता महेन्द्रप्रसाद श्रेष्ठ भने घाइतेहरुको तत्कालीन उपचार गरिसकेको र दिर्घकालीन सहयोगको कार्यक्रम स्वास्थ्य मन्त्रालय अन्तर्गत नरहेको बताउँछन्। उनले भने, 'विकलांगताको वर्गिकरण महिला तथा बालबालिका मन्त्रालयले गर्छ भने बाँकी काम गरिबी निवारण मन्त्रालयले हेर्छ।'
सुनिता र रमेशले जिन्दगीमा दोस्रोपालि हिड्न सिक्दा बालापन सम्झिएका छन्। तर त्यसबेला उनीहरुलाई हेर्दै बाआमा खुसी हुन्थे, अहिले फिजियोथेरापिष्ट।
तथ्यांकअनुसार २०७२ सालको भुइँचालोमा २२,३०४ घाइते भए। ८८५७ मरे। चार लाख ५० हजारभन्दा बढी विस्थापित छन्।
प्रकाशित मिति: मंगलबार, फाल्गुण १८, २०७२ १८:०२:२४ लेखक: नबिन बिभस् सेतोपटी बाट साभार गरिएको ।
International response to natural disasters continue to fail to address the needs of affected communities
Shakti Thami from Suspa village of Dolakha district was working in Charikot, the district headquarters, when the earthquake struck on April 25, 2015. Ten months later, he shares a house with four other families. He is still waiting for government compensation. He is not sure when the money will come. “There’s so much confusion. People in one ward have received funds but we haven’t. We are told the money isn’t coming from Kathmandu, but no one has told us why,” Thami says.
Thami is not alone in feeling uninformed about specifics of recovery. The post-earthquake response in Nepal was huge, mobilizing large international organisations, government bodies and local NGOs. Over US $4 billion was pledged for recovery efforts and huge amounts of resources were distributed among the 14 affected districts. With so many organisations and teams working in Nepal, why are so people uninformed and unaware of what is being done?
Rural communities are often left out of policy and planning decisions relating to recovery after natural disasters. As a result, there has long been discrepancies between the aid that is needed by specific communities and the aid those communities actually get. So we have poorly planned, but well meaning, emergency responses that actually make the situation worse.
Following Hurricane Mitch of 1998, Honduras was overwhelmed by donations. According to Alanna Shaikh, a global health professional who has written on relief efforts, the donations had a negative effect. “They clogged ports, overwhelmed military transport, and made it nearly impossible for relief agencies to ship in supplies they really needed. Those donations did harm, not good. Expired drugs had to be carefully disposed of. Inappropriate donations had to be transported away and discarded. All of this wasted time and money.” Examples of excessive donations of supplies hampering relief efforts can be found in Haiti and in India after 2004 Tsunami.
Back in Nepal, after the earthquake the Tribhuvan International Airport was equally overwhelmed by relief materials, large portions of which were unnecessary and unhelpful. International responses are always inadequate or poorly planned because they work on assumptions of what is needed. There is a constant lack of long-term community engagement. It is this arrogant top-down attitude of predominately Western organisations that causes, or certainly contributes to, poor disaster response. The lack of community involvement is the single biggest limiting factor in post-disaster response.
The post-quake reconstruction is an immensely complicated affair, made more so by the presence of numerous multi-national organisations. This complexity is natural. However, if the nature of the work is not explained, it can leave thousands thinking they have been abandoned by those in Kathmandu.
Two organisations that are working directly with communities are Accountability Lab and Local Interventions Group. Both currently work in all 14 affected districts and attempt to create a complete feedback loop for post-earthquake response. They are part of UN’s Inter Agency Common Feedback Project (CFP), an attempt by humanitarian agencies to collect data from local level while simultaneously provide crucial information to these communities.
The generated data is used by a variety of organisations including Oxfam to improve their responses. The two bodies not only provide other organisations with data, but also serve as crucial links between communities and organisations responsible for relief. The creation of the CFP is an attempt to create mechanisms to generate community feedback and integrate it in the response.
The CFP reports allow those in communities to engage and establish dialogue with international and domestic actors, with whom they otherwise wouldn’t have come in contact with. For example, in the Community Perception Survey in Dolakha undertaken in December, the CFP found that the information most required by citizens was related to government decisions followed by information on how to access or register for support. This shows a failure of government and non-governmental agencies to disseminate relevant information to those who need it.
This is also applicable in the case of NGOs. According to the same report, 33 percent respondents said NGO response was unsatisfactory, as they thought relief materials were being distributed based on political affiliation, the process was taking too long and NGO plans were unclear. Most worryingly, back in December, 88 percent respondents had said they were not prepared for the winter. Accountability Lab and Local Interventions Group are all too aware that disaster responses or interventions are often supply-driven and rarely fit needs on-the-ground and that after the earthquake it is clear there is a need to be more engaged to create dialogue with communities.
A crucial part of disaster management is the ability to learn from mistakes in order to strengthen local capacity. Analysis of post-earthquake reconstruction shows that there is a need to utilize local knowledge and capacity. Only by being an integral part of the recovery can communities ensure their needs and requirements are understood and addressed. Discussions regarding the involvement of communities are encouraging and could lead to an increased level of resiliency.
However, for many of the eight million people affected by the earthquake, any discussion or attempt to put the community at the forefront of relief effort is simply too late.
The author is a freelance journalist based in Kathmandu
Published Date: 06 Mar 2016 Written By: Maximillian Morch Published In: Republica http://www.myrepublica.com/opinion/story/38262/broken-lines.html
I never knew home- staying could be so fun and exciting until I experienced it in Kaulepani. A picturesque village located some kilometers further from the headquarter of Lamjung, Village received the Best Home-stay Award out of 300 villages practicing home-stay in Nepal on September 27,2014 on the occasion of 35th World Tourism Day.
We reached the village at dusk, its cool breeze quenching our tiredness of an hour hike. On the way we could see beautiful fields of mustard and rhododendron plants and a historical palace of Prithvi Narayan Shah built in the 15th century. It is believed the palace had a great role in the unification of Nepal. The village was a continuous uphill hike and upon reaching there, we got welcomed by our host family. They greeted each of us with a flower bouquet, tika and a glass of local wine. We were served light snacks and were allowed to rest for some time.
Home- staying was established in Ward No 6, Gausahar Kaulepani, Besi Sahar Municipality in 2011 AD. The village has 25 houses in total which includes families of Gurung, Newars ,and Bhujels out of which 14 houses have home- staying facilities. They have been charging Rs. 990 per person for one day package. The package includes Welcome Program in Gurung culture, light snacks, entertainment program, dinner, sleepover, bed tea and breakfast the next day and farewell program. Cultural songs, dances and folk stories are presented in entertainment package where the whole village gathers to entertain the guests.
To enjoy the welcome and cultural program, the team of visitors must be a minimum of ten. Shir Khola Aama Samuha manages cultural welcome program and snacks, Sayapatri Milan Samuha manages Panchakanyas, five small girls dressed culturally to welcome the guests upon arrival, and Tourism Board of Kaulepani Village manages the turns of houses to receive the guest as they aim to target each house in the village to receive same number of guests for sustainable development. They receive more Nepalese guests than foreigners.
The houses are minimum 50 meters distant from each other while some adjacent houses are even a 100 meters away. This facilitates the guests as no one is disturbed by their neighbors. The houses usually have two and three bed rooms and a house can accommodate seven guests in maximum. Til Maya Gurung, our host, says that the home stay has a very positive influence over her family’s economy as well as that of the village. Even the families which don’t accommodate guests supply foods and other necessary items which has directly or indirectly boosted their economy as well.
The village is 1600 meters above the sea level and the hiking route has more than 20 varieties of laligurans on the route. Thirty-eight varieties of medicinal herbs are found in the village. The village is rich in language, cultural diversities, traditions and biodiversity and is a role model of unity. A special animal called Charibagh is also found here, which appears like a tiger but is a size of a cat and can even fly. The Marsyangdi dam can also be viewed from the village which appears like a beautiful green lake to any guest. Visitors can get a sight of sunrise as well as a picturesque view of 14 Himalayan peaks like Budhha, Machhapuchhre, Annapurna and Manaslu from this place. Snowfall in Manaslu can also be seen from the village. There are also some historical places like Lamjung Durbar and religious places as Kaulepanidevi Temple and Lamjung Kalika Temple
Dev Gurung, the president of Gaun Paryatak of Kaulepani, and a pioneer of home-staying culture in the village, says that it has not only improved their financial status but also improved their personal hygiene and cleanliness. The village can cultivate green vegetables and other local vegetables properly to serve guests. Rooms, kitchens, toilets and bathrooms are kept clean and maintained properly by each house. The young men of the village no longer need to go to golf countries for a cheap job and they can work in their village themselves. If handicraft and other vocational trainings are given to the young generation perhaps, it can have a good business with the guests.
Home- staying in the touristic village of Kaulepani was a wonderful experience. It was a privilege for me to observe Gurung culture closely. Their hospitality was impressive. We all want to preserve our culture and tradition and it’s good witnessing those cultures. Home stay not only benefits the villagers but we are lucky enough to witness our own cultural diversities as well. I hope all the other villages in Nepal which are rich in culture endorse this business to promote their culture and regain their popularity where modernization has outdated most of the long lost tradition. This is also a very good way of keeping the young men in our own country and investing our work for our own benefit.
Story by : Aarju Basnet
Barpak BuildCamp is a unique opportunity to be part of Barpak’s transformation from an earthquake-devastated, rubble-filled, emotionally and physically hurt gloomy village into a visually beautiful, economically vibrant, physically safe and strong, culturally rich, and ecologically sustainable model town.
म सानाे ।
सानाे मेराे मुटु ।
साना धेरै मुटुकाे प्राण धान्ने ।
हरीयाे प्याराे फाट कुढुले म । बिष्णु पराजुलि
An unheard-of village in western Nepal, deprived of basic facilities of schools, roads and telephones, communicates through the latest intranet technology. These villages can only be reached on foot with a minimum hike of nine hours, but people here make business deals over computers.
Nepal is perfect tourism and adventure spot with top highest 8 peaks above 8000m with Mt. Everest. Numerous world heritage sites, many short and long trek routes with world class reputation, wildlife sanctuaries and diversified cultures. We have been renowned for our hospitality and friendly gestures. But our content creation and information portals on digital platform and internet is very poor. If digital maps could reflect all of these information whole world could benefit from it.
StoryCycle organised Map Up camp on 7-8 December 2013, as two half days program where participants can learn about various map based tools from Google.
Nepal... see heaven before you die...
This is a photo documentary of our cycle tour. we 've completed the eastern and central development region now looking forward to complete the western region