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blog : blog0013 : life during lockdown

krishna bikram shah
may 31, 2020; sunday
21:30 nst (nepal standard time)

namaste.

this is my 3rd blog entry written in lockdown (day #69 today here in kathmandu). for context/buildup to this blog entry, if you have not already done so, kindly check out my last two blog entries:

  • 2020/04/30: blog0012 : the covid-19 relief fund
  • 2020/03/31: blog0011 : corona lockdown

after 2+ months of being cooped up, no matter how hard i try, lockdown lethargy does creep in. staying positive has become more difficult. the first 4-6 weeks of lockdown i was super busy -- all of a sudden i found myself being able to work more hours in a day, as the transition from bed to working desk was literally 15 seconds. ;) but 60+ days on, no matter how "interesting" i try to make it, the same environment does make it challenging. i can only imagine how the folks at the iss (international space station) do it with six month stints at a time.

i did recently get my 2nd vehicle pass (thanks, ncmea!*) after the government invalidated all existing vehicle passes (the one i got around the 3rd week of lockdown), but like i said over my last blog entries, just because i have a pass does not mean i should be making unnecessary trips. we are on lockdown for a reason, but i think that's exactly the undercurrent that is fueling lockdown lethargy. let me explain -- we are on lockdown for the state to "flatten the curve" and prepare for what is to come, but unfortunately the state did nothing (or very little) and just kept on extending the lockdown with no end in sight. and that is where the hopelessness kicks in. "why did i just spend the last 69 days at home?" especially when we are not going to be able to come out ahead in this crisis anyway. the constant news of government corruption with respect to to covid-19 relief materials does not help and adds fuel to the fire in an already frustrating situation.

* ncmea = nepal carpet manufacturer and exporter association.

but anyway, the point of this blog is not to drag you down with negative ramblings. let me switch to the light at the end of the tunnel. a lot has happened over the last 30 days or so. again, just like in my last two blog entries, let me try and present it you in an organized fashion...

sarlahi

our non-profit free-for-all community schools are still officially "closed" as the government mandates it. however, some teachers and some students have meandered into the schools and have informally started "talking" to students with social distancing. again, our schools are not open yet, but a handful of students and teachers, who understand the risks, have gotten together to hold informal classes. the villages in sarlahi where our schools are have zero coronavirus cases to date, although the overall region (province #2) is highlighted as a hotspot thanks to the cities and towns close to the indian border.


2020-05-31_COVID-19_Informal_Class_at_Dhangada_School__860_460.jpg
2020/05/31 COVID-19 Informal Class at Dhangada School

2020-05-31_COVID-19_Informal_Class_at_Sahodwa_School__860_460.jpg
2020/05/31 COVID-19 Informal Class at Sahodwa School

we still do not know when our schools can re-open, but we are ready to hit the ground running.

to learn more about our sarlahi schools, please visit the project 3k page...

project 3k

our flagship crowd-based fundraiser...

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

like i mentioned last month, around this time (or a little before it) our new academic year would have already started and i personally would have been in sarlahi taking class pictures and individual student pictures for the 2077 project 3k registration forms. i usually make this trip before it gets too hot. we would have started a new cycle of records and reports. but thanks to covid-19, everything is still on hold... i have no idea when i will be able to travel to sarlahi again, but i hope to soon, at the earliest possible opportunity.

similarly, our recycle and reuse for education programs that directly feed into sarlahi are also on hold, although we are organizing recyclables during this down time...

recycle/reuse for education

our sustainable ventures that feed into our educational programs...

Hoste Hainse Fundraiser - Recycle For Education     Hoste Hainse Fundraiser - Reuse For Education

please continue to collect/gather your recyclables and/or your old clothes and household items. call us once the lockdown is over and we'll come to pick them up. call us at 01-5550700 or email us at [ office@hostehainse.org ]. thanks! :)

"the covid-19 relief fund" via global compact nepal

this was the topic of my last blog entry a month ago.

  • 2020/04/30: blog0012 : the covid-19 relief fund

the hoste hainse website home page still has the following text at the top:

Like you, we are closely monitoring the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and its impact on everyone across the globe. Our hearts go out to all who have been affected. As always, the health, safety and well-being of our communities, supporters and our employees is paramount. In a time of so much uncertainty, it is not easy to continue business-as-usual, but we are doing what we can under the circumstances.

Hoste Hainse is working with Global Compact Nepal on COVID-19 relief efforts, both immediate as well as long-term. Global Compact Nepal (GCN) is the local network of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC). [ read more ]

i am sure you know by now that i wear multiple pro-bono hats, my primary hat being the hoste hainse one. i am also the e.d. pro bono at global compact nepal, the voluntary service projects director at the rotary club of patan west, and an active member at the national commitee of the international union for conservation of nature (iucn), to name a few. what i am trying to do right now is put all these hats together and make them synergize for a greater good. thus, the entire covid-19 relief fund, of which the long-term pandemic tackling effort is on the front burner.


GCN COVID-19 Relief Fund
www.hostehainse.org/covid-19


the global compact nepal hat was strategically chosen to be the lead for this endeavour, as it is the local network of the united nations global compact, a voluntary non-binding united nations pact to encourage businesses as well as organizations worldwide to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies, and to report on their implementation. this organization has far-reaching networks, a reach much farther than hoste hainse, and in collaboration with hoste hainse, rotary club and even perhaps iucn, can yield in much bigger results. let's see what happens.


Hoste Hainse - UNGC Member     Hoste Hainse - IUCN Member


to find out more about this relief fund, please click on the image/link above or read my last blog entry, blog0012 : the covid-19 relief fund, but the latest update is that the draft proposal is now ready. here it is:


2020-06-06_Research_Laboratory_Concept_Note_v0.2.pdf
2020-06-06_Research_Laboratory_Concept_Note_v0.2.pdf

[ updated 2020/05/31 blog post-publish on 2020/06/06 with v0.2 of concept note ]


fundraising is in full swing. if you would like to get involved, please visit www.hostehainse.org/covid-19. the rotary club rota year ends june 30, 2020, and therefore we are busy putting in applications for funding over the next few weeks. please wish us the best. and since rotary is global, if you know of any rotary clubs that would be interested in join hands with us on this project, please let us know asap -- office@hostehainse.org. thanks!


Rotary Club of Patan West




united nations global compact virtual leaders summit

due to the coronavirus pandemic, the annual united nations global compact leaders summit goes online this year for an even bigger as well as more inclusive audience. the event would normally be held physically in new york mid-june every year. in a nutshell, the summit "brings together thousands of leaders to decide how business can support countries and communities around the world to recover better, recover stronger, and recover together from three global crises - health, inequality and climate." more info. here:

https://registration.unglobalcompact.org/website/12559/home/

closing remarks will be given by german chancellor, angela merkel, and the program boasts quite a few high-profile speakers, such as al gore and then-advisor to president obama, katie fallon, who is also part of the session co-hosted by nepal:

2020-05-31_UNGC_VLS_South_Asia_Regional_Session_Flyer__1280_720.jpg
UNGC VLS South Asia Regional Session

the nepal session is part of the south-asia regional session co-hosted by bangladesh, pakistan and nepal. i will be speaking about 5 minutes before the interaction starts between speakers from bangladesh, pakistan, nepal and an internatinal speaker from the u.s. nepal is being proudly represented by global compact member, chandni joshi.

if you are interested in attending, you can register here:

https://hopin.to/events/un-global-compact-20th-anniversary-leaders-summit

to view the complete agenda of the 2-day "chase the sun" program, please see:

https://registration.unglobalcompact.org/website/12559/agenda/

the nepal session is on tuesday, june 16, 2020, 4:45pm nepal time (7am eastern). please join us! more info. @ www.globalcompactnepal.org/vls2020.



prakrity sessions

as always, would like to point you to my weekly radio shows for the month of may 2020. as you know, they are fundraisers for hoste hainse. no, i do not have a page dedicated to them on the hoste hainse website yet, but i promise i will do that soon.


prakrity sessions 462 (may 2, 2020)


prakrity sessions 464 (may 16, 2020)


prakrity sessions 466 (may 30, 2020)


a fundraiser for the education of underprivileged children in nepal
more info @ www.prakrity.com


wrap-up

oh my corona! :(

the last time i wrote, we were at 3.2 million+ cases worldwide, with almost 230,000 deaths. tonight, 6.1 million+ cases worldwide, with about 370,000 deaths. not looking good. by the time you read this, the numbers will be higher. but humanity will find a way. once again -- my thoughts and prayers go out to everyone affected as well as everyone working on the front lines.

2020-05-31_COVID-19_Dashboard_at_Johns_Hopkins_University.jpg
2020/05/31 COVID-19 Dashboard at Johns Hopkins University


references to previous blog entries and in case you have not read those and would like to, here are the links for you:

  • [ blog0012 : the covid-19 relief fund ] - april 30, 2020
  • [ blog0011 : corona lockdown ] - march 31, 2020
  • [ blog0010 : german ambassador sarlahi visit ] - february 29, 2020
  • [ blog0009 : hh blog reloaded (again) ] - january 15, 2020

in closing, thank you for reading, and please take care as well as stay safe during these unprecedented times, not only with coronavirus, but also global racism. if you have any questions or comments on anything that i wrote about, please feel free to reach out: [ office@hostehainse.org ].

write/talk to you next month.

cheers,
krishna

this page is directly accessible via the following url: [ www.hostehainse.org/blog/0013 ].






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