CFFN Updates

Please accept our sincere greetings from everyone in CFFN for the New Year 2008.

Some unexpected events beyond our control had delayed our communications with you temporarily. However, we are here and standing as strong and we promise that you will hear from us with same intensity and frequency as before.

  1. Our Executive Secretary, Alys Muckart, passed away in December 18 unexpectedly. She was diagnosed with brain tumor in late October. Alys was not only a friend dedicated to the causes of Nepal but also was the President of the Canada Tibet Committee and she brought a long and distinguished experience gained through Canadian labor movement. We are devastated in losing her. Please click here to learn more about Alys. Also with this message we invite individuals with similar energy and passion to get involved in our organization in such capacity and be proud contributor to worthy causes of CFFN.
  2. The Issue Five of our publication Concern Nepal is here. This issue summarizes our activities of the Year 2007, features four articles on international volunteer experiences and on rural economic dynamics of Nepal. The abstracts of the papers accepted for our October 2007 conference on Nepal are also included here. Instead of flooding you with Word or Pdf documents, we would like you to read or download it directly from website. Please click here to read Concern Nepal – Issue 5.
  3. We are organizing an interaction program titled “The Issues of Social and Economic Justice and Peace Building in Nepal and their Policy Implications” on February 06, 2008 from 6:30PM to 8:30PM in Ottawa, Canada. The main speaker of the program will be a dynamic and prominent intellectual Dr. Arjun Karki, President of the NGO Federation of Nepal. This program will be coincided with our member’s meeting. You are not required to be a member of CFFN to attend the event. Please click here for the event information.
  4. We are running a pilot school project in Baglung, Nepal, to provide opportunity to grassroots people of North America to get directly involved with the grassroots people of Nepal without involving governments and big organizations in the middle. Our aim is to let the people themselves evaluate the utility of the activities and tune them appropriately with time. Two volunteers David Campbell and Zachary Gaydos of Illinois, USA went for three months mission to the area (Sept-Dec 2007) followed by Kelsey Wood of Pennsylvania (Dec-Jan 2007) and have established Internet connection and servers for gaining off-line access to significant amount of public educational material in two schools. They also did need assessments in the process. We would like you to be part of this worthy endeavor. Please click here to lean more about the project.
  5. CFFN Calendar of Events for year 2008 is published. As you will notice, the annual conference on Nepal will be organized in the first week of July of this year. Please mark your calendars and organize your holidays accordingly. Please note that July 1 is the most celebrated day of outdoors festivity in Canada and especially in Ottawa. We welcome you to come to attend conference, present papers, and have fun in Ottawa at the same time. Please click here to view the calendar.

Pramod Dhakal
Executive Director
Canada Forum for Nepal

Journey of the Volunteers

Having gone to Sarkuwa, Baglung for himself, Tom came back with unparalled hospitality and admiration of the people of Sarkuwa. Once in Illinois, Donna and Tom worked relentlessly to connect to local people and inspiring them for volunteerism. And there were David Campbell and Zachary Zaydos, two recent university graduates who rose up to the occasion and decided to volunteer at Sarkuwa.

Meanwhile, Pramod connected to concerned people in Kathmandu and Sarkuwa to arrange for the smooth guided travel for David and Zach from Kathmandu to Sarkuwa. Similarly, Tom and Donna worked on raising fund to cover for the air-tickets and little more for other expenses. Pramod formed a team of 12 people and created a group mailing system to make the communication among each other easier. Ann and Roy Campbell, Pat Gaydos, Donna and Tom Lea, and Shishir Paudel from Illinois, USA, David and Zach from wherever they happen to be, Pramod from Ottawa, Canada, Sudeep Dhakal and Balakrishna Acharya from Kathmandu, Narayan Acharya from Binamare, Baglung, make up those twelve at the moment. Continue reading

How Rewarding an Educational Program can be in a Remote Nepalese Village?

By Donna Lea

Sometimes there are moments in life that are worth reflecting upon. There were years not so distant from now that I used to be called Mrs. Lea by my third and fourth grade students at Fisher Grade School of Illinois, USA. It was a time when I assimilated the studies about Nepal in my classes to achieve four objectives: to make the learning interesting and fun; to make my students understand about life in the poor countries and value what is available to them; to make my students do something about the children of the world that are less fortunate; and to subtly teach my students about project development, marketing, sales and other valuable skills while raising fund for a Sister School in Nepal.

Many years after our Sister School project was ended and as the years of my retirement advanced, my curiosity about what might have happened in Nepal as a result of our endeavors grew more intense. This quest to know, along with other endeavors we had become involved with in Nepal, took my entire family to Kathmandu in December 2006. It turns out that sometimes simple beginnings can bear unexpected and delightful outcomes that are worth mentioning.

Continue reading