Where the vision is one year, cultivate flowers.
Where the vision is ten years, cultivate trees.
Where the vision is eternity, cultivate society.
.....................Oriental Saying...........................


SAIEVAC INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

SAIEVAC International Conference happened in Nepal at 2010 and presemted speech by THIS Executive Director on behalf of Nepal

THIS PRESENT BOARD MEMBER

THIS Present Board members

NGN and THIS Reintegration Guideline Launch

THIS and NGN launched their Reintegration Guidelines for trafficked and displaced children living in Institutions on 19th March, 2015 at Hotel del Annapurna, Durbarmarg.

THIS Picnic 2013

THIS Picnic 2013 at Thankot

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NGN/THIS Launches Reintegration Guidelines for Trafficked and Displaced Children : Download

19-March-2015
NGN/THIS Launches Reintegration Guidelines for Trafficked and Displaced Children


© Next Generation Nepal/The Himalayan Innovative Society

March 19, 2015—Next Generation Nepal (NGN) has launched its Reintegration Guidelines for Trafficked and Displaced Children Living in Institutions. The Guidelines are freely available for all individuals and organizations that wish to play a part in the deinstitutionalization of Nepal’s children’s homes.

“The solution for the thousands of children living unnecessarily in orphanages in Nepal is to take them home to their families,” said Martin Punaks, the Country Director for Next Generation Nepal (NGN).

Over 16,000 children live in children’s homes and orphanages in Nepal, despite at least 2 out of 3 of these children not being orphans. The Government of Nepal’s Child Policy is clear that children’s homes should be a last resort and all efforts should be made to keep children with their families. However, children’s homes in Nepal have become a first choice for many families who are deceived by traffickers with promises of a foreign sponsor providing a “good education” at “boarding schools” in Kathmandu.

NGN developed the Guidelines along with its long-standing Nepali implementing partner, The Himalayan Innovative Society (THIS). Together they have fully reunified 130 children and reconnected a further 353 children with their families. They have also trained other reputable organizations to establish their own reintegration programs including The Umbrella Foundation and Forget Me Not. NGN and THIS have a 100 percent success rate at family reunification with no child ever being re-trafficked following their return home.

The Guidelines explain in 8 steps how civil society organizations can work with the Government to rescue children from abusive orphanages, rehabilitate them, trace their families, reconnect and reunify them with their families and monitor them so they are not re-displaced.
Tarak Dhital, the Executive Director of Nepal’s Central Child Welfare Board (CCWB), welcomed the release of the Guidelines saying they will be “a good example and reference for others to work in this issue.” He recognized that NGN and THIS, in working closely with CCWB, have “helped some of the most vulnerable children in Nepali society to return to their families where they belong.”

The Guidelines were published with support from Forget Me Not and other donors.
The Guidelines are available to download here:
Reintegration Guidelines for Trafficked and Displaced Children Living in Institutions
Download BOOK IN PDF  : CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

Interview with THIS Director Dhan Bahadur Lama


Interview with THIS Director Dhan Bahadur Lama from TV Program AAWAJ

Thank you

Drama - "Chudiyeko Sambandha" - Download

A Street Drama "Chudieko sambandha"(Broken relationship):


This street drama is to raise awareness in order to reduce child-trafficking in the remote district of Humla. It emphasizes the importance of parental care for the overall development of children, physically, emotionally, and socially.  Family separation is the major problem in Humla due to child-trafficking and the search for better education. 

This drama describes a poor family who sent their children with an influential person "Raja Sahib" to Kathmandu and end up finding their child was trafficked for inter-country adoption. It also describes the consequences children face when they are kept in illegal orphanages. It also describes the mental depression of the parents to lose their child forever.

This project is supported by UNICEF and Terre des Hommes Foundations through The Himalayan Innovative Society in Humla.  Our main objective is to reduce child-trafficking and inform the population about family and community-based alternative care in Humla.  This drama has already been performed in three VDCs in the project area and aired on local FM radio, Kailash FM, in Simikot, under the "Humli Chhachhoriko Danko" (Voice of Humli Children) program.  The radio program was supported by the ISIS Foundation.


Listen And  Download 
Episode 1
                                                           Download Link : Click Here to Download Episode 1
Episode  One -2 Final
                                                              Download Link : Click Here to Download Episode 2

Thank you,
The Himalayan Innovative Society-THIS

A story of a kid dreaming in his classroom

Dhan Bahadur Lama,
DB Lama was born in a middle class shepherd family in a small village of Humla. He was a kind of child who liked to play with clay and makes dolls and cars with it. His elders used to say “This boy doesn’t play with things like his friends do, balls made out of clothes, stones, kappaddi etc. This boy shows some creative behaviour.” 
                                   
In his childhood there was a school about an hours walk above his village. He remembers only a few of his elders going to that School. He was born in a polyandry community where all the family members are engaged in different kinds of professions like, farming, rearing yaks, cows, horses and sheep. Most of the families gave preference to going after the sheep, and yaks. That is why most of his elders do not go to school.

People at that time used to think if he has the greatest number of animals he is rich and would get social respect too. People did not have a positive opinion about education; instead they used to say “Who will give job to my son if I let him go to school? If he goes after the sheep we do not have to employ another person.”

Even if one got permission to go to school, he could not continue it due to family pressure either to follow the family profession or to get married. Once he married, he is bound to fulfill family needs so he would drop out from school.

DB’s grandfather used to be illiterate but he was chosen as the “Mukhiya” (village head) of his village. Later he was chosen as “Upapradhan Panch” (Vice Chairman) of Humla. At his times there were no government offices in Humla. One had to go to Jumla to deposit government tax. During his tenure of pradhanpanch he faced a lot of problem due to being an illiterate person. He needed a person to read out his letters. So he decided to educate his sons and grandsons.

One day, DB was brought to the newly opened school in his village by his grandfather. He also brought a bottle-guard full of Chhyang (barley brew) with butter on the head of the bottle-guard. Later DB realized that it was the celebration of his first day to school. He started with Ka Kha…..- the Nepalese alphabet. When he started to read words and make sentences then there was a problem. There were no books available and DB has to depend on his teacher for the day’s lesson. One day DB got a book that he bought for 5 kilos of wheat. He told his mother and grandmother that he needed 5 kilos of wheat to buy that book. This was the second book that he bought.

DB slowly moved forward with amazing results. At that time the schools used to practice a rote system of learning. He was very bright and used to be the first child to give the test everyday. His teacher was happy with his attitude, and quest for learning. His memory power was amazing.

But one day he had a very harassing experience when his actual teacher went to the district headquarters. On that day the teacher appointed the eldest student for his replacement to run the school in his absence.

As usual DB was almost ready for his test. He had to recite the lesson by heart. But another boy stood before him to give his test. DB was surprised to see his friend who had never been before him. DB watched it thinking that he would not be successful but to DB’s surprise he passed the test. Soon DB realized the substitute teacher showing the book almost open to the boy. DB did not say anything and he prepared for his test. DB did good and passed 75% of his lesson but he got stuck at the end. He couldn’t pass the test but he was confident to pass the second time. Yes, he did very well that time but he was very badly hurt by the act of the substitute teacher. The teacher was not honest in his responsibility. That was the worst day in his school life so he still remembers the day. DB couldn’t resist this and he told this to his younger grandfather when he came home.

His grandfather used to be a very angry person who could not bear such biased actions. In his life he had dangerous fights with the people of Achham and Kalikot district when he was there herding his sheep.

The next morning he was ready to join DB to school. He saw the boy and asked DB if that was the yesterday’s substitute teacher. As soon as he noticed a nod from DB he grabbed the boy by his arm and threw him downhill towards his home. At this moment DB felt guilty for telling the story to his grandfather.

The teacher inquired about the incident; DB told the truth. The teacher asked both DB and the other boy to take their test again. DB passed but the other boy couldn’t pass so he had to repeat the lesson again.

From another point of view, DB was encouraged to keep working hard. His teacher also punished the substitute teacher. DB passed each and every test in first place. He used to know the names of the 75districts in 14 zones of Nepal by heart.

Later his school moved to Thehe. It used to take half an hour downhill to go to his school for DB. At that time there were 5 other older kids going to school also but they used to sneak out and pass time by gambling. They slowly started threatening DB for going to school. Later DB was relieved when a village teacher was transferred to that school. He started going with that teacher daily. Because of no water facility DEO Humla decided to move the school to another location.

Later, it moved to the present Raling High School location. It was much easier for DB to go to School. At this time he had more friends from the neighboring villages. He had 7 friends in his class. He was doing quite well in his class. This was a major turn in DB’s life.

One day the headmaster informed DB to go to the district headquarters to sit for a scholarship exam to go to study in Kathmandu. His family used to rear some cows and his next door boy used to go after the cows. But on this very day his family had to send him to plough the field and asked DB’s family to take turn and go after the cattle. This situation created a huge turmoil in DB’s mind and DB was forced to cope with the situation and find a way out to go to district headquarters to appear in the exams. Since childhood DB never liked going after the cattle. The other thing was that DB’s father, uncles and grandfathers were not at home. His mom and grand mother suggested him to go after the cattle. DB thought that it is definite that his mother and grandmother would send him after the cows rather than let him go to appear for the exams. So now he decided to run away from home: as soon as he had eaten in the morning, he escaped to join his teacher and his friends on their way to the exam. Finally he took all the challenges and risks in search of better education and opportunity to go to Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal and to choose for education rather then for cattle herding.

After 3 months there was an unclear news “Limi teacher Dhan Bahadur or son of a Limi teacher Dhan Bahadur Lama is selected to go to Kathmandu to study” and DB's father went to Simikot to confirm the news and he came with the good news that DB was selected. When he got the letter saying that it is time to bring DB to Budhanilkantha School (the best school) of Nepal then it took a few days to prepare for the journey to Kathmandu. The date was fixed for just after the Chaitalo festival in Thehe village on 12th of Fagun, 2034 BS (23rd of February, 1978). DB also enjoyed his last night with his friends singing “Dueda” after returning from Chaitalo.

At that time the airstrip in Simikot was under construction. The UNDP plane used to drop rice from the sky without landing and make two rounds to drop all the sacks of rice that it carried. It was not possible to fly from Humla to Nepalgunj. So we decided to walk up to Jumla and fly from there. It took us 7 days to reach Jumla crossing snowcapped high passes of Changkheli, Ghuchchi and Danphe Lek. My friend, Jagat, who was also selected for the same opportunity accompanied with us.

When we reached Jumla, it was the King Birendra’s visit to Jumla. It was like a big festival which we enjoyed and saw a helicopter first time in our life.

The next day we flew to Kathmandu via Nepalgunj. On the way to Nepalgunj, DB saw people cycling, driving jeeps and horse cart. It was a very interesting moment for DB. He saw different kinds of means of transportation common in Nepal. He also experienced the heat of the lowlands (Terai) in Nepalgunj.

After refueling, the plane left for Kathmandu. Once in Kathmandu DB’s father was sick due to the long journey by air. DB carried the bag that his father carried for the last 10 days and they moved to Boudha where there a guy from Limi owned a house and whom DB’s father used to know when he was a teacher in Limi. All three DB, Jagat and DB’s father stayed in that house. Next morning, all of the three decided to go to school

When DB and Jagat arrived in the Budhanilkantha School, they met with their friends and went to the store to get clothes and toiletries. Their friends taught them each and every rule and regulation including table habits. They started their lessons from that day.

DB’s father told DB that he would come back again. Each day DB waited at the school gate for his father. He kept doing so for a week as if his father would come to meet him. This shows that for a child his parents are very important. After one week DB told himself that his father had gone home. He spent the rest of the time as usual according to the school schedule.

DB spent seven years in this school and enjoyed all the facility that he got there. He was an average student in the school. He also received the first prize on poetry recitation competition when he was in class 4. During first monsoon month, it was raining heavily and DB was in the classroom. He dreamt of his father and friend who were after the sheep. “I am in the classroom and dry but my friends and my father should be out in the middle of the jungle grazing sheep and goats. It would be a good moment if my friends also got this opportunity as me. We could play together, eat together and have fun together. But……it was not possible because they are illiterate and that’s why they chose to go after the sheep and goats. Even if I could not do anything for my friends now, I will do something for the future generation of Humla. It was DB’s strong determination since childhood to do something for their community and the people. The only thing one can do to make a difference in lives of others is helping someone to acquire education”.

He completed his SLC from there and worked in different NGOs and INGOs. He worked as a principal in a boarding School in Surkhet for 4 years. After that he worked as a Nepali language teacher for expatriates at International Nepal Fellowship. After that he thought that he should go back to his community and work for the people of his birth place. Then he joined with Nepal Trust and work there for 5 years as project Coordinator. During this period, he worked as a Team Leader for trekkers who came to help build health posts, micro-hydro project and renovate monasteries. He also visited different parts of the Mid-western region of Nepal while walking with the trekkers from Jumla to Humla. He learnt a lot and had close understanding of the people of this region. He promised to work in this organization for at least 10 years. But it did not happen. The boss did not like his views of the lower level staff and their benefits.

Later he and his colleague Babita Lama decided to resign from the post and initiated their own organization, The Himalayan Innovative Society (THIS). He had to start from the scratch. He started the work with a computer that he bought for his elder son on his birthday. He put all his energy and strength on this, worked day and night. On the 10th of January 2003, he was successful to get THIS registered at the CDO Kathmandu. He contacted his friends whom he trekked with and worked. He was successful to at least start with 2 small projects. First one was Free SLC tuition class and scholarships to girls and Dalit students. Both the projects did not have any salary or office expenses. Luckily, by the end of August he was successful to tap a project on Community Learning Centers fromUNESCO Kathmandu. In this project, there was the salary for one staff only. He decided to take this as an opportunity and divide the salary with his colleague Babita Lama. They successfully completed the project with a great result.

At this time, Nepal was suffering severely under the Maoist insurgency and it was very difficult for small NGOs like THIS to survive. The project phased out at the end of 2005.

Again the bad days started and for 10 months there was no sign of another project. He kept contacting with different people and organizations for different kinds of opportunities. He received an e-mail from a friend about a conference on women’s right in Sandiego, USA. He decided to send his colleague Babita. She was successful to receive a visa for the conference. DB thought that it would be good to meet with different friends and networks in the US with Babita and she will have more exposure. He wrote to his friends and requested them to provide room to stay during her visit. She was seen off with great love and care. As the US Embassy provided her a 5 year multi-entry visa, she decided to stay there for longer time and sent just a 2 sentenced e-mail saying that she would like to stay for some more time. She continued staying in the US and the next year she also applied for her husband also and both of them are in the US till date.

In November, 2006, there was huge news of child trafficking from the districts of Mid-western region of Nepal. UNICEF also mentioned in its report that about 500 children from different districts of mid-western region have been trafficked. Different I/NGOs decided to work in this field and Central Child Welfare Board, District Child Welfare Board and Nepal Police rescued several children from an illegal children’s home. ISIS decided to help these children and provide care and education to them.

During this time, DB was looking for new projects and was applying wherever there was an opportunity. Once again one day; DB received an e-mail from a friend of him offering a new project on child-related activities. He accepted it and applied for the project on the basis of two staff Babita and himself. He got a sort of green light from the ISIS Foundation. At the same time he got e-mail from his friend Babita saying that she would not come to Nepal for 5 more months. It made DB very sad and DB did not know what to do. He thought that the opportunity be lost. He immediately decided to inform ISIS foundation and change the project staff due to Babita’s absence. ISIS also considered on his request to change the staff structure and asked DB to give his alternative staff structure. The project was confirmed and THIS decided to hire two new staff and run the ISIS Family Repatriation Project. By the end of November 2006, THIS had its first visit to 19 VDCs of Humla to find the family of the kids rescued from Matatirtha and Thankot’s child trafficking during August, 2006. DB led the team and visited 19 VDCs of Humla and found all the family members except of 3 orphans. In his field report he mentioned the need of better educational facility in districts like Humla. He concluded his report with the suggestion to try to improve the educational infrastructure and develop teaching and learning environment and improved educational services, etc.

Right now, with support from Next Generation Nepal THIS is trying to work in Bal Mandir, the second largest high school in Humla’s district headquarters with 530 children and where most of the poorest children go to receive their formal education.

THIS is hoping to improve the infrastructure, the teacher's attitude towards the students and self motivation towards their job. THIS is also seeking how we can practice good discipline and respect within the teachers and the students and how we can create a child friendly teaching and learning environment in this school.

In order to create a less expensive educational institution, THIS wishes to manage a school without ties, freedom of uniform but cleanliness and tidiness is highly encouraged. This criterion is very suitable for the people of Humla who have very limited sources of income and have been pressed by poverty, disease and illiteracy. 



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