Uma and I have visited all the children individually at home in the past week. We went to the school and met the very enlightened principal . Our original intention was to just sponsor the 5 children from the school, alongside the others and put them through private education. However, having seen the school and met the principal,we came away with a different point of view. We had a discussion at home following our morning visit. It is interesting that Uma and I shared the same feeling , that the children will be better served if they remain where they are, at the same time the school can benefit from our joint efforts.
So we returned to the school yesterday. We met all the mothers again,( interestingly no father is ever present ) in the principal's office. We or rather Uma shared with the mothers and the principal about our intentions to work with them to support the school to provide better facilities for all the children there. The only additional input for the 5 sponsored children will be in the form of daily English and maths tuition after school, paid by the sponsors. We talked about 21st century education for the youngsters.IT was the first topic that came up.The school is in the middle of a building program. There will be more rooms made available in the future. There is also an urgent need to have a science lab for the grade 6/7/8/9 and 10- equivalent of our secondary schools in UK. At present, the pupils only learn the theory of all the science subjects. They need the lab to do the practicals
Considering how slow things are done here, I was pleasantly surprised when the computer science teacher handed me 2 proposals, one for a computer lab and the other for a science lab.I thought it will take them a while to come up with something written when they mentioned that they will give me a proposal to consider . I have to say I was very impressed not only at the speed at which was given ,but the quality as well.. The proposal gave alot of details about the school. Information which will be useful when I need to make a case to all the potential donors in the future.
Oh I forgot to mention that I have been having coversations with some of the sponsors before the trip. It is the fact that it is looking increasingly necessary for me to register as a charity if I want to continue to attract donations and sponsorship in the future. I thought I will use this time away to consider the pros and cons of registering as a charity...However , faced with the pressing needs of the school, it will be an ideal project for the charity- helping the school to develop better facilities for the 650 plus pupils. Uma thinks the same too. W e have both become quite excited at the thought
So it is looking highly likely that I will start the process of registering on my return to UK. I hasten to add that I have not been seduced by the poverty here or making a hasty decision because I am in Nepal. Its something I have been thinking about on and off for a while. I have also been talking to some of the sponsors who are very encouraging and supportive if I decide to go all the way. I am mindful of the amount of work involved to set a charity up. However. having done 3 years of fund raising single handedly, I am now ready to take the next step. Uma and I are having discussions about the various processes that need to be put in place etc when we go formal.
So here I go again !