June 18th 2017 - Sanjiwani School Hostel for Blind children Re-opens
We are extremely proud to announce that the renovations to the Sanjiwani School hostel for blind children, following the earth-quake in 2015, have now been completed. The rooms have been plastered and painted; there is a new kitchen/dining area on the roof, new beds and furniture, a new outside sheltered learning/play area, a new septic tank and solar panel lighting. New musical instruments were gratefully received and were enthusiastically played at the official re-opening. JT would like to thank everyone who helped raise the £20,000 ($25,000) required and a special thank-you to the team on the ground and Yalamber Rai who worked so hard to turn this dream into reality. We hope that the new environment will make a positive difference to the lives of these inspiring children.
On April 25th 2015 a huge earthquake struck Nepal, devastating the country. Schools and buildings were destroyed across the country, which are slowly being replaced. In a town called Dhulikhel, twenty miles east of Kathmandu, the hostel for the blind attached to Sanjiwani School, home for up to 26 blind children who have to board far from their families, lost one of its two buildings. What remained was not safe and all of the children were squeezed into one building. The children could not go home to see their families as this government school is the only one for several days’ travel that will educate them.
Even before the earthquake, the hostel was in a poor condition but after, the site was even more dangerous, with three metre drops surrounding the building where the foundations of the old building were destroyed. Temporary safety balcony fences were loose and access around the hostel and school was very hazardous for those with visual impairments. In the hostel building itself, there were no study desks, dilapidated kitchen facilities and little in the way of entertainment for the children who live permanently on site for ten months a year. Despite this, the children were incredibly friendly, optimistic and the most welcoming people you could meet.
The project’s sole aim was/is to make life better for these children and, working with them and the local community, the Juniper Trust agreed to help fund a complete renovation of the hostel. Building started almost imedialety in December 2016, once local formalities had been completed and thanks to a donation of £5000 from JT.
In addition to the building work and essential living equipment, we asked the children for a wish list of simple things that would improve their quality of life, to add to the USB players and headphones already donated and much-used. They asked for several traditional musical instruments to play which will and help integrate them into the community – music and singing are such an important part of the Nepali way of life.
The remaining £15,000 is still being raised and we are close to reaching our target. Any help you are able to give is incredibly gratefully received. Thank you for your time in reading this - we hope it has moved you to contribute and make these children’s lives better.
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