- Group:Anglia Girl Guides
- Age:15-19 years old
- Group Size:14 Guides 2 Leaders
- Project:Care & Community
- Destination:Kathmandu, Nepal
Before they went away
Nikki Lake who ran the trip said one of the key aspects to the trip was that “the girls were selected to do a service project and not go on a summer camp so there were different challenges”. Nikki was proud of the team work shown by the group of different girls who fitted in so well together in spite of not having known each other before the group was formed.
What they did
The group made a great contribution to the renovation of the small Zing School on the edge of Kathmandu as well as working on an educational program with the students. The school is set in an amazing location surrounded by paddy fields with a great view of a mountain as the backdrop for the school.
On arrival at the school there was a warm welcome from staff and students alike with a lovely ceremony where everyone was garlanded and blessed. It was a great start to the trip for the 14 members of the group who had been selected from their individual groups to join the trip. After being slightly overwhelmed by the welcome the hard work started of repainting almost every classroom and bench in the school. In spite of the warm weather there was hard work from everyone which was really worth it when you started to see the transformation. Emma said that one of the most rewarding moments of the trip was “On the first day at the school seeing the way that the classroom was transformed by a couple of coats of paint was amazing”.
In the two weeks in addition to repainting the school the group did some great work with the students. One of the most memorable had to be seeing the whole school doing the hokey cokey with a lot of bemused teachers! A dental hygiene program had every student going home with a toothbrush and toothpaste as well as the words of a Clean Your Teeth song ringing in their ears. Other activities included making some wrist bands, fish from plastic bottles and playing parachute games.
Another memorable evening was a trip to a girls home where an impromptu disco started as well as games of football and badminton. Everyone learnt how to make Momo’s (Nepali dumplings) as well as testing a good few of them!
The trip was not all simple. Emma talked about one of the first challenges being using one of the squat toilets at the school! Ellen talked about how as volunteers “you need to be prepared for the culture shock and the food”. A good piece of advice to anyone thinking of coming to Nepal was from Heather; “Embrace everything from all aspects of Nepali life and culture”.
The weekend trip
A long trip to Chitwan proved worthwhile when the group got the opportunity to explore the National Park. Although adjusting to the hot temperatures took a while the group was cooled by the monsoon rains that came in force. The group had an opportunity to trek through the jungle with a local guide as well as take a trip in a traditional canoe through the rivers which harboured local crocodiles. Nobody was keen to hang their hands out of the boat! Although there were no opportunities to see rhinos there were opportunities to see bears and deer as well as crocodiles.
The girls certainly stood up to the test. There was admiration from Projects Abroad staff and staff at the school as the girls worked really hard to make a difference to the small school. Navin Amatya from Projects Abroad staff said “The girls guide group were amazing and how hard they worked. They were well organised. I had wonderful time working with them. Also to see their work makes me happy.”