The 24 members undertaking the 3 week trip set off from Heathrow on a frosty November evening for the flight to the sunshine of Kathmandu arriving the following evening. After a day’s acclimatisation seeing the sights of Kathmandu and shopping in the Thamel district for bargains galore they set off for the village of Purano Duwar.
The village is in the Lamjung region west of Kathmandu and sits high on a ridge with spectacular 180 degree mountain views of the Annapurna and Manasulu mountain ranges. It has a school which serves several of the small surrounding villages with 340 students and 12 teachers providing education up to 9th grade.
The village committees were keen for the school to achieve full Secondary status and provide education up to 12th grade. This would mean that older students would no longer have to leave education early and so they approached Community Action Nepal for help building 4 new classrooms and Project Nepal 2 was born!
The Team had raised the £13,000 required and undertook the necessary training in the UK and for their part the villagers had dug the foundations, sourced the timber and stone and completed the walls up to ground level. Work began immediately and the classrooms began to take shape.
The Team were joined by adult village volunteers and usually by a class of children from the school who came to help carry mud, stones and generally get involved. The children could understand some English and there was lots of laughter and good humour. One day the Scout Troop from a village down in the valley walked up to spend the day helping and were quite a sight in their pristine uniforms working around the building site.
All too soon the last day of the Project arrived and the Team were welcomed into the school for the final time to join in with dancing and singing by the children as their way of saying Thank You. The Team had completed the classrooms up to wall plate level. Arrangements were left in place to engage and pay local workmen to complete the roof and photos of the completed building reached the UK early in 2011.
After leaving the village the Team split for 3 days of activity options before meeting up in Kathmandu for a final day’s sightseeing and shopping and a celebratory last night meal. Some went trekking higher up into the foothills for a breathtaking view of the mountains at sunrise while others went on safari in Chitwan national Park to see elephants and white rhino. Another group went to the lakeside town of Pokhara to laze by the pool and generally chill out in a 5 star hotel
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