by Tamara A.
Once upon a time in a far away land, a prince desired to build a castle for his fair maiden.
That seems to be a dramatic start to this. (That’s what I get when I watch Disney movies.) So in a more straightforward version…
Back in November 2010, Edge of Seven began construction on a hostel in Salleri to house 40 girls in order to continue their education.
In the Solukhumbu region, an education can be a bit more difficult to achieve…especially for girls. While there are a variety of reasons for this, here are some of those that hold a larger impact on the situation:
- Geography– Villages in this region are in rural settings and often have difficult treks between them. While the majority of them have primary schools that are accessible to the students, higher education (this being grades 11 and 12) facilities are not as common. Students often have to make a couple days journey to get to a school.
- Poverty– Looking at the distance that often exists between students’ home villages and the schools, it is necessary to stay in close proximity in order to complete their education. This costs money. Money that families don’t often have. Much of the population in this district is living in poverty. On top of not currently having the money to support this, the decision to educate their children (especially their girls) means that they are losing labor that helps to provide for their family.
- Stigma– This mainly exists for females. In the Nepali culture, single women are seen as unlucky and are often excluded by communities. If a girl chooses to pursue education, that means that they are delaying creating a family and are committing themselves to singlehood for at least a few years longer. So for females, education isn’t always viewed as a positive endeavor. (Check out the Peaks Foundation’s blog on addressing this issue and building up the women ofNepal.)
Fast forward and here we are. About 10 months, 30 volunteers, and a boatload of blood, sweat and tears (minus the blood and tears, I hope) later. The hostel was completed last month and 40 young ladies moved in at the beginning of this month. They are eager to start learning and we are eager to get them learning.
Thank you to The Small World for helping us with this project. Thank you to the volunteers who dedicated their time. Thank you to all donors who saw this project as worthy of their money.
We’re excited to see where these girls can go from here!