Report of the Activities and Successes of Himanchal High School, Nangi – Nepal July, 2012
Students graduated from the school:
The eighth grade in Himanchal High School was started in 1993 after Mahabir Pun went to the village. The first batch of students, who sat for the national level examination of 10th grade, was in 1995. The national level examination is called School Leaving Certificate (SLC) and it is considered as the “Iron Gate” for the students in Nepal. Total number of students, who passed the SLC examination until now is 292 (169 girls and 123 boys) from 1995 to 2011. We had started 11th in 2003 and 12th grade class in 2004. The total number of students, who passed the final examination of 12th grade until 2011, is 178 (88 girls and 90 boys). The school has been trying its best to keep records of the students after they complete their education at Himanchal High School although it is difficult to keep track of them in Nepal. According to our records, 3 students have completed Master degree and six of them are studying Masters Degree. 7 of them have completed bachelor degree and 30 of them are either doing their bachelors degree or have completed part of their bachelor degree. 22 former students of Himanchal are now teaching in different schools as a teacher. Some of the students are working as trekking guide and cook in Nepal.
Handmade Paper Making Project:
Paper making has been a successful project of Himanchal High School. Every year we use more than 300 Kg of raw material to make paper. We make different products from paper such as note books, shopping bags and envelopes. Sarah from Australia, who was a volunteer in Nangi few years ago, helps to sell paper product in Australia. We are selling approximately 600 note books per year in Australia.
The Schult family from Singapore is helping to sell wine bag and gift bag made from the paper in Singapore. In June 2012, they took 1,200 wine bags and gift bags. Some demands of the paper bags have also come from the US as well. Until now, we have sold paper products worth about $3,500.The paper making project has created seasonal job opportunity for 12 women and is generating some income for the school. Now we provided training for women to make beads from paper and sell in the market.
Yak farm and Crossbreeding farm:
Nangi village had started a Yak farm with another village called Paudwar in 1997. Now there are 160 Yaks in the farm. The two schools are sharing the income that comes by selling yak butter, yak meat and yak blood. The yearly net income from the yak farm is around $1,500. One Yak can be sold for about $250. Also we have started Yak and cow crossbreeding farm and there are 25 cross breeds now.
The crossbreed of Yak and cow are used as pack animals and they give more milk. We also sell the cross breeds for meat to the villagers. We are planning to start a small scale cheese making plant from the milk of the cross breed in future.
Community Managed Tourist Lodge Project:
As part of the community managed trekking program run in Nangi region, two community lodges were built by Himanchal High School in two places. One lodge is in Nangi village and another is in Mohare Danda. It was built with the partial financial support of United Nations Development Program. The total cost was about $50,000 and the community had to share 40% of the construction cost. The lodges were completed in the spring of 2011 and trekkers have started to come through the new trekking trail. Most of the trekkers stay in Nangi for two nights and visit the school and different projects run by the school. The net income from the lodges goes to support the school and the health clinic in Nangi.
The Schult family from Singapore has supported to build hot showers in Nangi lodge and guest house. In June 2012, they also put rain water collection tanks and water treatment system in Mohare lodge. The trekkers will be able to use the treated water.
So far 110 trekkers in total have come through the new trekking route in 2011 and 2012. The net income from the lodges so far is about $2,500. The trail is getting more popular because it is not crowded with trekkers like other popular trails in Nepal. We are getting booking from the trekking companies based in Kathmandu and abroad for the coming September, October, November and December trek.
New Hostel Building for the students under construction:
Himanchal High School had small hut type hostels for the students until now. It has started to build a new hostel for boys. The capacity of the new hostel is for 48 students. It has 17 rooms. 16 rooms are for students and one is for the teacher. The estimated cost for building the hostel building is about $21,000.
The District Education Office and Village Development Committee have provided about $13,000 and Nangi community needs to bear the rest of the cost. The building will be completed by October.
Construction of New Health Clinic Building in Nangi
There is no government clinic in Nangi village. Therefore Himanchal High School has also been running a health clinic from 1999 to provide health services to the villagers. Dr. Debra Stoner has been helping for the training and improvement of the clinic. There are three health workers working in the clinic now . Two of them are nurses and one is a dentist. The nurses have 18 months’ basic health and midwife training and the dentist has 3 year dental training. The health workers work in the clinic and also teach nursery and health classes in the school as well. The clinic is also equipped with internet and video conferencing system for tele-medicine. When there is some serious health problem, the health workers can consult with the doctors in Kathmandu through video conferencing system to help the patients.
Distribution of scholarship:
Himanchal High School had received $266 for scholarship from HEF in April 2012. The scholarship was distributed as follows. The simple criteria set to receive the scholarship were;
A) Very poor family background.
B) Well-disciplined and laborious
C) Good grades in the school tests
D) Either currently studying at Himanchal High School or studying in other schools after completing 12th grade in Nangi.
The list of the students, who got the scholarship are as follows. The photos are given above.
- Ms. Shusma Garbuja: Grade 9, From Ramche village; Scholarship amount Rs. 3,445 ($43)
- Ms. Prem kumari Pun: Grade 9, From Nangi village; Scholarship amount Rs. 3,445 ($43)
- Ms. Manisha Senchuri: Grade 9, From Kaphaldanda village; Scholarship amount Rs.3,445 ($43)
- Ms. Maya Chochangi: Grade 8, From Nangi village; Scholarship amount Rs.3,445 ($43)
- Mr. Prushottam Paudel: 2nd year Bachelor degree student at Dhaulagiri Multiple Campus, Baglung. He is former students of Himanchal High School. Scholarship amount Rs. 7,500 ($94)
- Plan to start a three year health training program in Nangi village:
We are working on to start a three year health training program in Nangi village. It is called “Health Assistant” program in Nepal, which is approximately equivalent to community nurse or medical assistant program in the US. Now we are in the process of getting approval from the Council for Technical Education and Vocational Training (CTEVT) of the government of Nepal. Most of the theoretical classes of the training program will be taught by doctors and experts from Kathmandu Model Hospital in Kathmandu through video conferencing system. The clinical and practical parts of the program will be taught in the rural clinics and in Nangi. It is going to take some time to start the program because it has to go through various bureaucratic processes. The new clinic building will also be used as classrooms for the health training programs. We are looking for support to build science labs for the health training program.
- Plan to start a college in Nangi village:
We are planning to build a 4 year college in Nangi in 2015. However, it is not an easy task to get done. We are not much worried about finding resources for building physical infrastructure such as class rooms and computer labs etc. We are more concerned for finding money to pay for the teachers. We are very much sure that the new trekking route and community lodges will bring some cash income to pay for the teachers, however, it will not be enough. We need supports from outside to run the college.
We are continuously looking for more ideas to start some more income producing projects for the future college. We don’t need to hire many fulltime teachers for the college because we will be using information and communication technology heavily for teaching in the classrooms by teachers living far away from Nangi. Technical infrastructure for tele-teaching has been already set up in Nangi using wireless technology. The wireless networking project that was initiated from Himanchal High School has been expanded in 145 villages of 15 districts of Nepal now.
Himanchal High School family appreciates very much for your support for teachers’ salary and for other projects. Without your support, it would have been impossible possible for us to hire enough teachers and bring the school to the situation where it is now. Thank you.
Reported by: Mahabir Pun and Chitra Pun, Nangi Village, Nepal