First action of “Little Poland in Nepal” was rebuilding of Dumre village, Nuwakot district, Sunkhani region – 29 km from Kathmandu. The village was completely destroyed. Most of the buildings collapsed after the earthquake. It was not possible to renovate the remaining ones, they needed to be made from the scratch to allow 100 people lead normal life in a safe environment. Some of the houses belong to trekking guides and porters who were connected to the founders of Little Poland in Nepal before the earthquake. The houses in the village are built in a simple way: wooden frame, stones or bricks, clay mortar with some cement (mainly for the base). Initial cost of such a house was estimated at 5000 USD, school rebuilding cost – 15 000 USD and Dumre total rebuilding cost- 100 000 USD. However the situation changed after 22 September 2015 when India blocked the border with Nepal and stopped delivering fuel, gas, medicines and food. The prices of food, building materials and many more rose. It was possible to buy fuel only on black market for 5 USD per litre. Our initial calculations were inadequate. India cancelled blocking the border in February but high prices remained. Although we face many difficulties that we haven’t foreseen, the project continues. “Little Poland in Nepal” Foundation coordinator in Dumre is Sujan Pandey. He is responsible for organizing and buying building materials, architectural design, food and supplies for volunteers. He is supervising construction site, talking to villagers, local stakeholders and other parties, he also works together with the Neplaese people if needed . Magdalena Pietruszka-Pandey supports him from the office, taking care of informative policy, PR, communicating with the patrons, sponsors, media, volunteers, donators and all supporters of Little Poland. We want as many people as possible to share our idea of helping Nepali citizens who need support. In another words… Let’s do it!
First component: building drinking water container for Dumre inhabitants
After the earthquake all the water springs in Dumre were destroyed. They were uncovered, cleaned and closed in a 7000l flow water container. The money – 20 000 PLN – was collected among Sujan and Magda’s friends in May 2015, the work started on 14 June. Citizens of Dumre village, hydraulic engineers and builders were working together. The main water tank consists of three flow water containers and water pipes delivering water to the village. Everything was finished on August 2015.
Second component: building school in Little Poland village.
School in Dumre has 30 students and a few teachers. During the earthquake school’s walls cracked and it was impossible to learn there. Our goal was to build new school with toilets and outbuildings. The Foundation will continue helping students even after finishing this Project by giving scholarships and providing further education. Teachers and animators from Poland who speak English are welcome here to work with Nepali students. The school was opened on the 30th April 2016 by the Ambassdor Tomasz Łukaszuk so from this moment Dumre students can learn in the new modern building. Petralana – a Polish company was the main sponsor of the new school.
Third component: building of Community House (Called Polish House) in Dumre.
Cmmunity Hall (Polish House) is a place mostly for the villagers but also to stay for Polish volunteers, Little Poland’s ambassadors, donators, journalists and everyone who would like to come to Dumre. It will be the place for exchanging experience, knowledge and kindness between Polish and Nepali citizens. There will be a library, photo exhibitions, concerts, activities for children and adults, medical trips for doctors who help village people around Kathmandu. Medical support will be delivered by Redemptoris Missio Foundation (finance and logistics). But it is also a chance for Polish people to learn something from Nepali culture, natural medicine or life philosophy. During the stay here they might also learn yoga, sing and dance, Nepali cuisine or ayurveda body and soul care. The building is almost done, we want to finish it till the end of April 2017. It will remain open for all Poles. Always.
Fourth component: support for the houses reconstruction
After finishing the school and Community Hall we will help building houses mostly by buying the construction materials. Old houses need to be destroyed because it is impossible to live there with all the damages caused by the earthquake. Some of the building materials – stones, wood – will be recycled and reused. Our Foundation got new projects of modern and better buildings of different sizes to fit different families, also with many generations under the same roof. The projects were designed by an architect from Nepal but also improved by Polish construction engineers to be more stabile and resistant to earthquakes. The cost of a single house depends on its size, the amount of recycled materials but also government’s help for each family (estimated at 3000 USD maximum). The average cost is expected to be 5000 USD. The residents of Dumre village but also paid workers will work on the construction sites. Sujan Pandey and Nepali construction site manager will be the coordinators of all works.
Fifth element: volunteers and professionals in Nepal
The camp for volunteers in Dumre started on 26 October 2015 and lasted till the end of February 2016. Twenty-five volunteers were building the village between 26.10.2015 and 29.02.2016. There were professional engineers, electricians or builders as well as non-professionals – people who wanted to help. All of them had a place to sleep and meals in the village also transport between Kathmandu and Dumre. The idea was to work together with local people. There was some time to know each other, cooperate, relax after work. In the evenings we were sitting by the fire, playing music. People from Dumre were giving Polish volunteers local snacks and fruit grown by themselves. They all became close or even friends. However we will welcome volunteers or professionals to our “Little Poland in Nepal” Foundation projects in the future. Doctors, vets, English speaking teachers, animators, people who want to help on the farms and many more – everyone counts. We will inform about the needs in this field on our webpage and in Facebook.
Sixth component: long term aid in many fields
Rebuilding Dumre was the first step to make the Polish – Nepali connection and first action of “Little Poland in Nepal” Foundation. But Nepal needed some help even before the earthquake – now it should be increased. It is a young democracy, the society is highly divided into castes but also groups like poor and rich, country and city, women and men. There are more citizens who need help and we want to support them. “Little Poland in Nepal” Foundation acts also in several different ways for example pays for the education of poor children from villages, especially girls. Girls and women have hard life, they finish their education earlier when they are poor or have a lower social status. They take care of family and children, they don’t get any job, have a lower education level. We want to help them in getting a professional education, motivate to have a job. Another issue is healthcare. When they are poor or live in the country the only solution to take care of their health is to borrow money and travel a long way to the capital city. We want to help them, diagnose and treat. We are also planning medical students and teachers exchange to learn modern medicine from Polish doctors. We will also support cultural Polish-Nepali exchange. There are many areas where we can help. We hope you would like to help!
WE ARE LOOKING FOR A SPONSOR FOR RECONSTRUCTION OF BADRUTHAR SCHOOL NOW – a primary school for 60 students in Nuwakot district. Old school is completely destroyed and the students learn in a temporary shelter. Anybody willing to help is very welcome!
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