A quick update on our OnlyABuck™: Nepal Notebook Campaign. We’re just over 44% to our goal of $4,200! This money will enable 30 students in Nepal who have applied for need-based scholarships to attend school for one year. We are working together with the Nepal Volunteers Council to create a sustainable platform to ensure that those students selected will never miss a day of school again; not this year, not ever. We are not alone in believing that education is the answer for Nepal as it is the only way to break the cycle that currently exists.
Reports from my friends state that summer back home is officially over and that school is back in session. After volunteering in Nepali schools and a boys’ shelter last week, I can’t help comparing the education system here with the one I know from home.
I am envisioning my hometown with enormous back-to-school signage in primary colors hanging in many store entrances. An exciting buzz surrounds shopping for cooler weather clothes and collecting supplies, checking them off a list. When my brother and I were younger, we would excitedly hunt through the JCPenney catalog for a few new outfits and a pair of shoes. Later, at the store with Mom, we’d choose fancy lunch boxes, Lisa Frank and cartoon folders, and maybe a Trapper Keeper or Kaboodle to hold our new gel pens, mechanical pencils and glue sticks. Three-subject notebooks, neon-colored rulers, protractors and compasses were tossed into the cart to aid our education.
In stark comparison, Nepali children need three basic supplies for school. These include notebooks where they transcribe what the teacher writes on the board, pencils for writing and a full school uniform, which is mandatory apparel. Some schools require their students to buy workbooks, but most do not even offer this luxury for learning.