“Volunteerism is the voice of the people put into action. These actions shape and mold the present into a future of which we can all be proud.”- Helen Dyer
Volunteering is all about giving commitment of time, skills, experience, knowledge and energy for the benefit of people and society. A volunteer does not work for money but heshe serves needed people freely and selflessly as the belief goes “volunteers are not paid – not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless”. A volunteer is not paid monetarily but heshe is paid with the feeling of self-worth, respect and self satisfaction.
Volunteering in Nepal:
Nepal is one of the most beautiful and most welcoming countries in the world. This mystical Himalayan country is blessed with eight of the world’s highest peaks including the highest Mount Everest, some of the best walking trails on earth, centuries old stupas and temples and astonishingly beautiful and diverse landscape, ranging from the well-known peaks of the Himalaya to the low-lying regions of the Terai.
However, Nepal is one of the developing countries of Asia with low rates of literacy, high rates of poverty and persistent gender imbalance. Many national and international organizations are working in Nepal for the development of Nepalese communities. They organize volunteer program all over the country and invite international volunteers for uplifting the life of poor and marginalized community. Volunteering in Nepal can be an extremely rewarding and fulfilling experience. On the one hand, your efforts benefit the needed people and fortify the lifestyle and spirit of the people and on the other hand, you get opportunity of learning Nepalese ways of life and understanding Nepal in the real sense. Your volunteering experience can be a heartfelt, profound and life changing in Nepal.
Anyone, regardless of age, religion, experience, background, ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability, religious status can volunteer in Nepal.
Areas of volunteering in Nepal:
Many students of Nepal are deprived of education either because of lack of physical resources or good educational system. Volunteers can choose any school and teach and mentor the children. They do not need formal training of teaching. Besides teaching, volunteers can also participate in other school activities such as sports, dramas, sanitation and awareness programs etc.
Thousands of children in Nepal are orphaned, abandoned, or not supported by their parents. They do not have access even to the basic rights such as the right of education, the right of health facilities, and right of livelihood. Volunteers there act as big brothers or big sisters of orphans and help them in their study, medical visits, cleaning, paper recycling, gardening, organizing games, and planning activities for orphans after school. They fulfill children’s emotional needs with love and compassion and enable the children to develop and realize their potentials.
All the volunteers with or without knowledge and training on medical field can volunteer in healthcare projects. Most of the major hospitals, skilled doctors, nurses and health assistance are centered on city areas. There is an average of one doctor for 12,000 Nepalese and many rural people face untimely death because of lack of medical facilities. The volunteers who have medical training can assist in public and private hospitals performing health checks, creating medical records and joining nursing in vaccination campaigns. While other volunteers, who do not have medical training can teach people about sanitation, nutrition, first aid treatment and other basic health issues. They can also conduct health classes in order to educate people.
Teaching in Monasteries:
The volunteers who are interested in Buddhism and Buddhist culture can teach English language to both young and adult monks and nunnery students of monasteries. Besides teaching, they can also participate in Buddhist rituals and meditation programs of monasteries. The volunteers should have good knowledge of English and if they have the experience of teaching that would be the plus point for teaching in monasteries.
Empowerment of children, women and marginalized people:
Women are considered and treated as the second citizens in most of the developing countries like Nepal. Though legally men and women are given equal rights, there is discrimination between them. Specially, rural women are deprived of education, health facilities and other basic rights. Volunteers can help such women by giving skill training and language classes, organizing literacy programs and legal training and educating and motivating them.
Many children become the victims of child labor in Nepal. Volunteers can educate and mentor them. Besides women and children, there are many marginalized groups in Nepal who suffer because of caste system, economy, and social status. Volunteers can organize awareness programs against discrimination and encourage marginalized people for their empowerment.
Old Age Homes:
The senior citizens who can no longer work, earn and care themselves are sent to old age homes by their children or family members. The volunteers can work in old age homes and help them in cleanliness, cook food for them and look after them. The old age people are full with knowledge and experience but most of them are sad and isolated. The volunteers can spend quality time time talking with the senior citizens and listening to their experiences.
Besides these volunteering areas, there are several other areas of volunteering in Nepal. You can choose any one of them and start volunteering in Nepal.
• Official staff for support office work.
• Peace and Development
• Health sector health camp and working hospital for poor people
• Nepalese language and culture
• Cultural , traditional exchange and family stay
• Trekking, hiking and rafting
• Buddhism (and many others)
• Natural healing and meditation
• Environment and conservation
• Livelihood program
• Scholarship program
• School Construction
• Agricultural Research
• German language class
• Website design and maintenance etc.
Organizations to work with:
There are many government and non- government volunteering organizations in Nepal which are working in both rural and urban area. These organizations provide different volunteering opportunities for the people who want to volunteer in Nepal.
From the arrival till the departure, you will have a safe, meaningful and pleasant stay in Nepal and the warm-hearted Nepali people will be grateful for your presence in Nepal.