During my trekkings through the mountains of Nepal we stayed in simple lodges. I noticed small young children working there. They gathered fire wood, hauled heavy backpacks and carried heavy baskets everyday to earn their bread. Once I asked my guide about this and he had a perplexing response: "Many parents are too poor to take care of their children, so they make them work in the lodges in exchange for food and shelter." Although surprised, his answer was not much different than my guess. One time I came across a bright kid during my trekking adventure. I noticed some different but encouraging behaviour in this child. The boy worked all day to take care of tourists: he carried their backpacks, gathered wood for the fireplace, cleaned rooms where tourists stayed and took care of food and drinks for them. In his "spare" time he talked to tourists. This helped him to learn to speak English and some basic arithmetic. Seemingly luckier than many other kids, however, without any extra help this boy will also lead the life his parents and forefathers did, work hard his entire life, without any hope of creating a better future for himself.
Later I enquired my guide about the situation most kids are in the region. He understood exactly what I meant because he also came from a similar background. But he was fortunate enough to be able to attend school, because he received a scholarship. One of the teachers saw his potential and stimulated him to go to university. The doorway to a better future was opened. Nowadays he received his master degree in Kathmandu, is working as a guide during trekkings and also serves as an initiator for Nepali Children Organisation. Encouraged and highly impressed by his contribution we decided to carry out plans and projects for the less fortunate children. Ram Prashad Sedhain is arranging the Nepali side of the foundation whereas I arrange the Dutch part.
Shuikhet is the village where Bodharaj was born at 1985. It is a village 16 km from Pokhara. From the age of 17 Bodharaj starts working as a trekking guide. That is also how he met Jolanda at 2015. Since his childhood he is involved in social work. Eg: He was president of the community library , did volunteer work at a large INGO and was also involved at other social organizations that helped children. Bodharaj loves social works. Specially when he can help children who really needs help. He finds out Nepali Children is the best option to help children because the founder Jolanda works by heart and this young organization is succesful at many projects. Also Nepali Children will be a platform for social work for the children in his home village. A lot of families at Suikhet have a hard life and daily face a lot of difficulties. Because most of them are farmers, they have every day food but most of time too little money for education, medical care or other expenses they need for living.
Nepali Children gives Bodharaj a full time job. During this time, he will be your trekking guide if you book a holiday by Jolanda. And he will also be involved in all projects of Nepali Children, Nepali Children guest house and support Jolanda as much as possible.
The goal of the foundation is to help disadvantaged children by offering them a safe place to stay and enabling them to receive an education so that they are able to create a better future. Another goal is to involve local Nepali people in helping them to maintain the foundation without any financial support from the west.