Forty Eighty years ago, I used to wait for the Nepali New Year to receive a box of gift from the Nepal Red Cross which is sent from the United States Red Cross. That was my favorite month of the year, waiting for a gift box with two pencils, pencil sharpener, eraser and may be a candy. That was forty eighty years ago.
In 1972, I left Nepal to receive further education in the USA. After being in the states for ten years, I saved enough money to visit my home country. During my visit to Nepal, I encountered with two little girls who were collecting pennies from the temple, who were suppose to be in School. But I found our that their parents were not able to send them to school. That was my turning point, where I found my purpose – providing opportunities to poor children to get education.
As Picasso said “ the meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of Life is to give it away”.
I came back with determination to send those two girls to school. I started to organize small events to raise funds for scholarship programs in Nepal. During my second visit to Nepal in 1990, I challenged a group of Rotary members from the Patan Rotary with $500 dollars match to start a new scholarship for poor children in Patan area. Now after 26 years, that program provides more than 500 scholarships in Patan.
Nepal Project has become my passion. As of now, we have completed more than 15 global projects in Nepal to provide safe drinking water to building libraries and establishing computer labs. During my Rotary Governorship, I came up with a theme called
“Passion into Action”.
That passion is now in a full gear, especially, after the big earthquake in Nepal in April 2015. Now, I am working along with my Son and Daughter with our new project called the “Asha Project”.
Asha means hope in Nepali.
We figured that we can give those poor people in Nepal some Hope and Opportunities. HOPE and OPPORTUNITIES brought me to this county forty five years ago and that same Hope and opportunities, we are trying to provide to people of Nepal.
We just started distributing $100,000 Rotary Foundation grant to earthquake victims in Nepal in partnership with the Rotary club of Mahabouddha. We are in the process of working with the Rotary Club of Lalitpur to set up computer labs in six schools with $50,000 grant from the Rotary Foundation as well. During our 2018 Humanitarian mission trip, we spoke with many Rotary clubs in Nepal and we are planning to develop first Rotary Fair in Nepal. Our small amount of money goes long way in Nepal. Even we don’t drink a Starbucks coffee once a week, we can save enough money to send one kid to school for a whole year.
As one of the African proverb said “Things you do for yourself are gone when you are gone, but the things you do for others remain as your legacy”.
So what kind of legacy we want to leave behind as a Rotarian?
Whatever your passion is, whatever that idea is that you’ve had for all of these years that you’ve known that you want to take forward. Let’s put or PASSION INTO ACTION and try to help those who are less fortunate than us.
Thankfully, we all have gifts to give/share with each other and the world. So be it. ~ Namaste.