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blog : blog0010 : german ambassador sarlahi visit

krishna bikram shah
february 29, 2020; saturday
19:00 nst (nepal standard time)

all right, so i did not make february 15, 2020 (i had written at the end of [ blog0009 ]: "now comes the big test -- will i be back on february 15, 2020?"). but at least i am still in the month of february thanks to the leap year this year. :)

so much has happened over the last 6+ weeks or so. where do i even begin? but let me try and stay as organized as possible. i have this habit of jumping from one topic to another since there is so much correlation between topics.

milk delivery proposal (german ambassador sarlahi visit)

i think the highlight was definitely the german ambassador to nepal visiting one of our hoste hainse non-profit free-for-all comunity schools in sarlahi (hence, the title of this blog entry). after over a year of lobbying, he finally made the trip. let me give you some background information:

in 2017 we applied for a grant at the german embassy in kathmandu. the german embassy here has a small grants program. after the success of two fish farming income generation programs in sarlahi, we wanted to start the third one, but this time with milk as opposed to fish.

learn more about the german embassy small grants program here (i encourage you to apply):
https://kathmandu.diplo.de/np-en/themen/weitere-themen/-/2080218

although the idea stemmed from buffalo farming, we ended up writing a milk delivery proposal (long story which also deserves another blog entry of its own). what milk delivery basically is -- it's the collection (purchase) of milk from local households, which is then in turn sold to the local dairy; milk that would otherwise go to waste due to the lack of logistics and transportation. simple steps with big results. hoste hainse volunteers david and ganja (check out their blog entry), along with lisa, spent a lot of time writing the proposal. here's the final public version (updated for 2018):

2018-04-26_Proposal_-_Income_Generation_-_Milk_Delivery_in_Sarlahi_v1.2.pdf
2018-04-26_Proposal_-_Income_Generation_-_Milk_Delivery_in_Sarlahi_v1.2.pdf

but guess what? we did not get the grant. a year passed, but then in 2018 we got a call from the german embassy saying about npr 20 lakhs (npr 20,00,000.00) of excess funding was available and they would like to award us this funding for the milk delivery proposal we had written in 2017. we were stoked. this was the first time we'd gotten funding from an organization like an embassy in a long time, as 100% of our funding is all friends and family. we do not work with big aid (yet).

i personally went to the german embassy to accept the cheque from the ambassador in october 2018, along with bipasha (who was then on her first tour with hoste hainse). when i met his excellency roland schaefer, i extended to him an invitation to sarlahi to see what the funds would be used towards. bipasha and i also told him about our schools and how these funds would touch the lives of over 2,000 underprivileged children. here's a copy of the agreement we signed:

2018-10-12_German_Embassy_Agreement_and_Cheque_NPR_19,66,000.00.pdf
2018-10-12_German_Embassy_Agreement_and_Cheque_NPR_19,66,000.00.pdf

three months passed, our project started gaining momentum, and we began inviting both the ambassador as well as the embassy to visit not only the project that they had partially funded (milk delivery), but also our hoste hainse non-profit free-for-all community schools. january 2019, we also submitted our first "proof of employment of funds" to the embassy. that is when we finally got a verbal date from the embassy. someone would come and visit us before may 2019. but due to scheduling conflicts, that trip never happened.

the summer of 2019 passed. by fall 2019, milk delivery + fish farming was on track to "earn" our hoste hainse non-profit free-for-all community schools no less than npr 9,00,000.00 over a 12-month period, which is about 15% of our current total budget. we were very happy. we were finally heading into the direction of self-sustainability. then, november 2019, we finally got a call from the german embassy. the embassy was making a trip to province #2 to visit projects that they had funded. we worked out logistics and received them with honor. kabita thapa and paula werner from the german embassy in kathmandu were the first individuals to visit us in sarlahi:

2019-11-25_German_Embassy_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit.jpg
2019/11/25 German Embassy Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit

pratima and i made a trip down to sarlahi, and we first gave them a tour of our hoste hainse non-profit free-for-all community school in padariya, and then visited our income generation milk delivery project, which is five minutes away from the school. please check out more photos on facebook here:

2019/11/25 German Embassy Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit
https://www.facebook.com/pg/hostehainse/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2698947600189816
(no facebook account required to view these photos)

and that, pretty much, set the stage for the ambassador visit.

in january 2020, we also met with giz country director, dr. elke foerster, and talked about how the german embassy had partially funded our milk delivery income generation project. that's when dr. foerster mentioned that the ambassador was planning a trip to janakpur in february 2020 to visit some giz projects in the area. you can only imagine what i said (or lobbied for) next. sarlahi is literally a stone's throw from janakpur.

a few emails and phone calls later, we were on the giz agenda for the ambassador's visit on february 18, 2020. this time, pratima, rashmi, sun kaji and i drove down to sarlahi, a day in advance, to receive the ambassador. just like for kabita thapa and paula werner from the german embassy back in november, we also welcomed the german ambassador, his excellency roland schaefer, as well as pramod bhagat from the german embassy, heartily:

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_01.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - Arrival

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_02.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - Welcome by Students

as usual, we gave his excellency roland schaefer, as well as pramod bhagat, a full tour of our hoste hainse non-profit free-for-all community school for underprivileged children in padariya.

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_03.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - School Tour

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_04.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - School Tour

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_05.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - School Tour

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_06.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - School Tour (Library)

then we visited our income generation milk delivery project, five minutes away...

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_07.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - Milk Delivery Income Generation Project

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_08.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - Milk Delivery Income Generation Project

before we knew it, 90 minutes had passed and it was time to say goodbye. the agenda said 60 minutes with us, but something must have gone well for him to spend another 30 minutes with us. everyone was very happy, inclusive of our sarlahi coordinator, binay chaudhary, with whom my mother, sulochana shrestha-shah [ profile ], started the hoste hainse non-profit free-for-all community schools for underprivileged children in sarlahi.

2020-02-18_German_Ambassador_Hoste_Hainse_Sarlahi_Visit_09.jpg
2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit - Goodbye

please check out more photos of the visit on facebook here:

2020/02/18 German Ambassador, HE Roland Schaefer, Hoste Hainse Sarlahi Visit
https://www.facebook.com/pg/hostehainse/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2763525333732042
(no facebook account required to view these photos)

according to binay chaudhary, this was the first time a #1 diplomat had visited his hometown of padariya. i found the ambassador to be a very hands-on direct-to-the-point person, which i liked a lot. quite a few fronts to follow-up on after this visit. we talked about the road to self-sustainability and how local opportunities need to be present for the students that we are producing. vocational training (the germans' core competence) complemented by industry. this is when i mentioned that the other hat i wear -- executive director pro bono of global compact nepal, the local network of the united nations global compact [ www.unglobalcompact.org ], may play a huge rule. we're connecting all the dots. an immediate follow-up action item for me is to connect with the nsst (nepal secretariat of skills and training) and a meeting with claudia seitz. let's see what happens.

to find out more about the german ambassador to nepal, his excellency roland schaefer, please check out this link:
https://kathmandu.diplo.de/np-en/botschaft/-/1618286

so there you have it -- perseverance pays off. october 2018 to february 2020. it was work in progress. :)

right after the ambassador left, we did not waste any time and jumped straight to our next agenda for the day... highway cleanup...

highway cleanup

this is something that started recently. recycle for education [ www.hostehainse.org/recycle ] has been around since 2018, but we had never really tied it up with litter picks. the first small-scale test litter pick happened on the prithvi rajmarga on the way back from the rotary conference at the beginning of february. this gave us enough confidence to try a fully blown litter pick this time around when we were in sarlahi. hence, a litter pick, viz-a-viz, highway cleanup on the mahendra rajmarga in sarlahi.

it's quite simple -- we collect trash/recyclables and then sell the recyclables to raise funds for the education of underprivileged children via our education programs.

2020-02-18_Highway_Cleanup_at_Mahendra_Rajmarga_Sarlahi_01.jpg
2020/02/18 Highway Cleanup @ Mahendra Rajmarga, Sarlahi

2020-02-18_Highway_Cleanup_at_Mahendra_Rajmarga_Sarlahi_02.jpg
2020/02/18 Highway Cleanup @ Mahendra Rajmarga, Sarlahi - Pratima, Rashmi, Sun Kaji

2020-02-18_Highway_Cleanup_at_Mahendra_Rajmarga_Sarlahi_03.jpg
2020/02/18 Highway Cleanup @ Mahendra Rajmarga, Sarlahi

2020-02-18_Highway_Cleanup_at_Mahendra_Rajmarga_Sarlahi_04.jpg
2020/02/18 Highway Cleanup @ Mahendra Rajmarga, Sarlahi

2020-02-18_Highway_Cleanup_at_Mahendra_Rajmarga_Sarlahi_05.jpg
2020/02/18 Highway Cleanup @ Mahendra Rajmarga, Sarlahi - Loading up the Trash/Recyclables

2020-02-18_Highway_Cleanup_at_Mahendra_Rajmarga_Sarlahi_06.jpg

more photos on facebook here:

2020/02/18 Highway Cleanup @ Mahendra Rajmarga, Sarlahi
https://www.facebook.com/pg/hostehainse/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2763481203736455
(no facebook account required to view these photos)

once again, recycle for education [ www.hostehainse.org/recycle ]. i wrote this last month as well -- the perfect example of marrying a socially responsible activity with our core competence -- education of underprivileged children. in the past, we were informally using recycling proceeds to pay for small hoste hainse needs or other social activities. now, everything is streamlined -- we recycle (enough said), and use the proceeds of recycling to pay for the education of underprivileged children via hoste hainse, and that too by means of our flagship project, project 3k! [ www.hostehainse.org/3k ]. the "recycle for education" page even lists how many students are getting an education via this program! check it out @ [ www.hostehainse.org/recycle ].

project 3k
more info @
www.hostehainse.org/3k

united nations global compact

a lot... a lot is going on... on this front as well. but since this blog entry has already reached a bit of substance, i fear i will need to save these topics for the future. quick reminder that hoste hainse is a member organization of both ungc as well as iucn. you might already know the u.n. global compact [ www.unglobalcompact.org ] is the wing of the united nations which urges businesses and organizations to embrace social responsibility. iucn [ www.iucn.org ] on the other hand is all about the conservation of nature.

Hoste Hainse - UNGC Member     Hoste Hainse - IUCN Member

like i mentioned above, the other hat i wear is being the executive director pro bono of global compact nepal [ www.globalcompactnepal.org ], the local network of the united nations global compact. and we have been busy, since hoste hainse hosts the global compact nepal secretariat free-of-charge. we're off to a good start with monthly programs in 2020 and we hope to continue to do one program per month.

in january, we had networking with the #1 of the united nations (resident coordinator, valerie julliand) and the #1 of undp (resident representative, ayshanie medagangoda-labe). valerie and ayshanie pledged their full support to us, the local network.

2020-01-22_Global_Compact_Nepal_and_UN_RC_UNDP_RR_Meeting.jpg
2020/01/22 Global Compact Nepal & UN RC, UNDP RR Meeting

more photos on facebook here:

2020/01/22 Global Compact Nepal & UN RC, UNDP RR Meeting
https://www.facebook.com/pg/globalcompactnepal/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1793936590742700
(no facebook account required to view these photos)

in february, we had an interaction program with the nepal development consortium (ndc) [ www.nepaldevelopmentconsortium.com ] from seattle, washington, usa. in a nutshell, the nepal development consortium (ndc) was born november 2019, when a nepalese delegation led by gandaki province chief minister, prithvi subba gurung, visited with washington state governor, jay inslee, in the usa. with a vision of building a sister state relationship between washington and gandaki, the ndc will act as a enabler for bilateral trade related to tourism, infrastructure development, renewable energy, information technology as well as agriculture, with a focus on sustainability.

ndc core members, murthy kalkura (mk) and debadutta das (dash) from the usa were visiting nepal the second week of february 2020 on ndc's first networking trip to study the business climate as well as meet stakeholders as possible partners. global compact nepal facilitated the interaction program at the undp premises.

2020-02-13_GCN_Nepal_Development_Consortium_NDC_Networking_Meeting.jpg
2020/02/13 Global Compact Nepal (GCN) Nepal Development Consortium (NDC) Networking Meeting

again, more photos on facebook here:

2020/02/13 Global Compact Nepal (GCN) Nepal Development Consortium (NDC) Networking Meeting
https://www.facebook.com/pg/globalcompactnepal/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1811956985607327
(no facebook account required to view these photos)

although there is no direct benefit to hoste hainse via these programs, hoste hainse core staff -- rashmi, bipasha, pratima and sarita are networking in overdrive, which ultimately will indirectly benefit not only hoste hainse, but also their own careers.

the rotary club of patan west

Rotary Club of Patan West

did i tell you that i am also involved in rotary? :) i became a rotarian the december of 2017. the first year or so i merely absorbed everything. but now, i am slowly getting active (and dangerous). ;) the highway cleanup campaign (above) hoste hainse runs in conjunction with the rotary club of patan west, where i am a member at. we run a lot of programs via our club, and one we did recently was an awareness campaign on the corona virus by inviting dr. sameer mani dixit to our club to enlighten us.

2020-01-30_RCPW_Guest_Speaker_Corona_Virus_Sameer_Mani_Dixit.jpg
2020/01/30 Rotary Club of Patan West Guest Speaker on the Corona Virus Outbreak - Dr. Sameer Mani Dixit

needless to say, more photos on facebook here:

2020/01/30 Rotary Club of Patan West Guest Speaker on the Corona Virus Outbreak - Dr. Sameer Mani Dixit
https://www.facebook.com/pg/rotaryclubofpatanwest/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2775094262567733
(no facebook account required to view these photos)

again, hoste hainse secretariat fully involved. there is so much that hoste hainse is involved in behind the scenes.

prakrity sessions

you can probably tell that we're towards the end of this blog entry, as i often close with a link to my latest radio show. and yes, that is exactly what i am going to do. in my last blog entry, [ blog0009 ], i left with you prakrity sessions 446. two weeks later, i had bipasha in the studio, with whom i recorded the project 3k jingle. check it out:


prakrity sessions 448 (january 25, 2020)
a fundraiser for the education of underprivileged children in nepal
more info @ www.prakrity.com


2020-01-25_Bipasha_PS448.jpg
2020/01/25 Bipasha records the Project 3K Jingle on Prakrity Sessions

as you already know, this is another fundraiser for hoste hainse that has no mention on the hoste hainse website as of yet (just because i have not had time to put it on there yet). you also may know about the broadcast already since i have been doing it for the last 8+ years. it's my personal weekly uplifting electronic music radio show; more info. here: [ www.prakrity.com ]. available as a free subscribable podcast on itunes, an any-time on demand download @ www.prakrity.com, or live on local fm, radio nagarik, 96.5 mhz., every friday night at 9pm nepal standard time. more info here: [ www.prakrity.com ]. click to listen. :)

we had a milestone episode earlier this month - episode 450. celebrating almost nine years of this weekly uplifting electronic music radio show which is a fundraiser for the education of underprivileged children via hoste hainse. we turn nine july 4th weekend.

episode 450 was a massive 5-hour broadcast. take a listen:


prakrity sessions 450 (february 8, 2020) - 450th episode special
a fundraiser for the education of underprivileged children in nepal
more info @ www.prakrity.com


and then episode 452 which i also just recorded a week ago with full commentary (the odd numbered episodes do not have any talking):


prakrity sessions 452 (february 22, 2020)
a fundraiser for the education of underprivileged children in nepal
more info @ www.prakrity.com


and ok... i think that's all she wrote for this blog entry. wow, not bad, eh? although 2 weeks late. :)

the big question -- when will i be back? will it be another month? six weeks? or a year?

thanks for reading.

cheers,
krishna

this page is directly accessible via the following url: [ www.hostehainse.org/blog/0010 ].




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