Explore Himalaya Community Service Volunteer Program is primarily designed to bring forth coordinated efforts of all the experts and individuals in different areas under one platform and thereon work towards achieving its common goal and mission. It provides a unique opportunity for volunteers to live and work in Nepal. Upon selected for volunteering, an individual gets a chance to make a contribution for the sustainable development of Nepal especially in Nuwakot district. Volunteers are required to contribute in the areas like school education, health, community development, forest conservation, agriculture, culture preservation and fund raising and maintenance of the water pipes.
TYPES OF VOLUNTEER PLACEMENT
Volunteers are placed in schools, health post, local village and other project implementing areas in Nuwakot district in accord with their interests and abilities. The volunteer program provides following options for volunteers:
Primary school (age 4 – 12) You can teach English, Math, Physical education (sports & exercise) Social Studies & Environment (Focusing on values and the culture of Nepal) or Creative and expressive art. As a volunteer you can teach one or more subjects. Keep in mind that the facilities are poor and you have to maintain child-friendly environment. You must adopt result-oriented creative teaching methods. Minimum Duration of volunteering – one day
Secondary School (12 – 18) Depending upon your areas of expertise, you can choose to teach many subjects; English, Physical exercise, Social Studies (more focused on different cultures), Science (Chemistry, organic science & Biology combined) Moral education, Population & Environment, Agriculture and Computer class. If you do not possess a teaching degree, you will be only permitted to assist a teacher. However, if you volunteer for a longer period say more than a few weeks, you will definitely be capable enough to conduct such classes independently in a short time. Minimum Duration of volunteering – one day.
A professional English teacher Bhairabi Secondary high school in Nuwakot district needs a long term English teacher. If you bear an University degree and have work experience as a English teacher you are eligible to teach students of 8th, 9th and 10th grade. Even if English is your second language, we are still eligible for this position. You are required to work for 2-3 hours a day teaching school students of the school and some interested villagers. Meals and accommodation will be provided in a ‘Nepali Homestay’ (see further on this page). You are expected to bear your own flight ticket. Visa fee and insurance shall be beared by the organization. Minimum duration of volunteering: 6 months, one year is preferred.
Key actor for promoting goal-oriented development practices If you think you have the experience, knowledge and caliber to make a difference in the community of Nuwakot district, then this position is rightfully meant for you. You can volunteer to raise awareness regarding significance of education, sound health, gender equity and equality, information technology and many such development issues plus environment issues. You are required to work in coordination with local villagers and our staffs at the time of conceiving action plans, writing proposals for good projects and fund raising for the betterment of the community. You should switch your roles in accordance to the needs and requirement of the community people. You can even make your own initiations to implement projects that would benefit the community and the community people. Minimum duration of volunteering – one week.
Forest conservation The people of Nuwakot are especially sensitive when it comes to preserving their forest. You can aware, train and guide the local villagers regarding forestation and tree plantation- provided that you have good knowledge and experience in forestry. Minimum duration of volunteering – one day
Live as a farmer Volunteering as a farmer or volunteering to live with farmers is an option provided for you in Nuwakot district. This will let you experience how it is to rely on weather just the way local farmers do in their practical life; using non-mechanical tools most of the time and especially learning how to grow different crops. Minimum duration of volunteering – one day
Culture, Art & Entertainment
Organize a workshop Do you know how to rap, dance, do karate, capoeira, act in theater, play a musical instrument or something else? The people of Nuwakot will be pleased and enthusiastic to receive a workshop concerning these exciting events. As a volunteer you can organize a workshop for those who are interested in culture, art and entertainment. Minimum duration of volunteering – 2 days
Organize a cultural event As a cultural event organizer you will be assigned to organize parents’ day for school, festivals, musical performance and many other entertainment shows. Time and challenges are the two major companions that would remain with you in this position. You should know how to ignite life and spirit into all types of event. Minimum duration of volunteering: 2 weeks
Nuwakot district has a small government supported health post which has few medical staffs and insufficient patient beds. You will be required to work in the health post under such meager condition. The health post receives 20 – 40 patients a day. Minor operations are carried out in this health post. Generally, local people come here to cure stomach ache or lungs problem. Your job responsibility also includes teaching school students about health-related issues and circulating awareness regarding proper hygienic practices in the community. If you are a nurse or a medical practitioner, you would be able to do more justice to this position. Minimum duration of volunteering – one week
Every year in the dry season Nuwakot district faces the worst water crisis due to its 26 years old dysfunctional water pipes. For the past 26 years, there has been absolutely zero development in maintaining and repairing these water pipes. No initiations of any kind from any sector have stepped forward to upgrade the present water pipes with high tech ones. This has made the drinking water very harmful and more prone to water borne disease. Your responsibility will be to bring in more funds into Nuwakot district so that in the coming future there will be high quality water pipes and local people will have their access to safe drinking water. For this position, you must have knowledge and experience in fund raising or in building networks with useful organizations, NGOs and INGOs. You should also be thoroughly versed in proposal writing. You will also be required to make timely field visits in the project implementing area.
KNOW BEFORE YOU COME
Once you have been accepted for the volunteer program, you must accept and abide by the organization policy. Absolute commitment is the most essential attire you must instantly wear if you wish to volunteer. We strongly advise you to make careful and serious considerations prior to making any commitment with us. You are required to sign in on the daily attendance roster and on your own individual time sheet. When the time comes for you to leave your volunteer service, please notify the organization as soon as possible. If you are injured or become ill while on duty, you must notify the site supervisor. If you want to take a leave, you must fill up an official leave form available by the organization. You must always take best interest of Nuwakot district at heart.
Arrival in Nepal
When you arrive at Kathmandu Tribhuvan airport in Nepal, you will find two separate visa counters; one counter is for visitors carrying a visa and another is for visitors without visa. Be prepared to deal with necessary visa formalities. When you come to baggage claim area, an x-ray machine will check your hand baggage. Once you step outside the arrival hall, you will spot many taxi drivers and porters eager to serve you. Some may go out of their way making you feel harassed. Take this calmly and look around for our staff who will be carrying a sign with the name “Explore Himalaya”. Very often we get complains from our clients about airport porters harassing them for tips. Be very strict about this and do not tip unless you want to. Our staff will thereon safely escort you to the hotel and later will brief you about your programme.
Visa and Entry procedure
All visitors except the Indian nationals must hold passport and valid visa. Visa can be obtained at the Nepalese diplomatic missions and consulates abroad. Visa is also issued at the entry points. It can be extended at the Department of Immigration, Bhrikutimandap, Kathmandu. Children under 10 years need not pay any visa fee.
Visa Fee – Gratis visa for all tourists who visit Nepal for 3 days or less. Gratis visa for tourists of SAARC countries and People’s Republic of China. Single entry- US$ 30 days for 60 days Multiple entries- US$ 50 + US$ 30
Visa will be extended subsequently for 30 days each upon payment of US$ 30 for a maximum period of 150 days in a visa year (Jan-Dec).
Meals and Accommodation
You have to stay at a house of local family in Nuwakot. Accommodation and meals will be provided for which you have to pay; US$ 5 per day for both meals and accommodation in Nuwakot. But for a week long stay, the cost comes around US$ 4 per day and for a month stay it is US$ 3 per day for accommodation and meals. You will be served Nepali cuisine which you may find spicy and unflattering to your taste bud. So, you must learn to adapt to living and eating the way local people does in Nuwakot.
In Nuwakot, you may find some villagers drinking water out of tab instead of drinking boiled and filtered water which can be extremely risky. Therefore, when you are at a local villager’s house, please be careful that the water villagers give you for drinking is hundred percent boiled and filtered and safe to drink. However, you can buy bottled mineral water easily at local shops. If you are travelling in rural areas, it is always wise to carry iodine tablets with you to be safe from water borne viruses, bacteria and parasites. At reasonable price, you can also purchase iodine crystals from local shops. Iodine can produce negative reaction on your body if taken in excess. You can also carry a filter along with you to be well resourced with safe drinking water. Two kinds of filters are available in the market. First kind is total filter and though expensive it completely protects you from bacteria, viruses and parasites. Second one is simple filter and is not as reliable as the first one. It filters water but does not ensure hundred percent results.
Climate in Nuwakot varies according to its season. Autumn and spring are the two most favorable seasons. Autumn starts from early September to early December and brings in clear weather with sunny days and warm nights. Whereas spring starts from the beginning of March to the end of May with occasional rain falls. From June to September, it is the monsoon season.
You get facilities like internet, private courier services and fax machines easily only in Kathmandu. As you reach the rural areas of Nuwakot, you will be deprived of these facilities. There are local shops in Nuwakot from where you can make both local and international calls. For internet access, you have to go to Battar, Bidur and Trisuli where you will find some internet cafes. You can purchase cell phones but as network problems are very common in Nepal, you might not be able to communicate clearly.
Normally, domestic consumption of electricity in Nepal comes to 220 Volts/50 cycles. Climatic conditions in Nepal may bring in fluctuation in electric supply leading to load shedding and the same is in case of Nuwakot. So, be prepared to deal with occasional load shedding in Nuwakot during summer. It is advisable to carry voltage converters and plug adapters when you travel to Nuwakot. Voltage converters and plug adapters are easily accessible in Kathmandu.
Stretched across diverse picturesque landscape, Nepal lies geographically sandwiched between China and India. Nepal encompasses total surface area of 147,181 sq. km from the Himalayan range in the North to the Indo-Gangetic lowlands in the South at the latitude 26°12′ to 30°27′ North and the longitude 80°4′ to 88°12′. Topographically, Nepal has lowland Terai Region in the south, central lower mountains and hills in the middle and Mountain Region in the north.
Health & Vaccination
Prior to travelling to Nuwakot, it is advisable to get vaccinations of Hepatitis A, typhoid, diphtheria, tetanus, poliomyelitis, hepatitis B, rabies, tuberculosis, meningococcal meningitis, Japanese B encephalitis, and cholera. You must know that Malaria precautions are essential in all areas below 1200m, all year round. Carrying a small medical kit can be very useful and wise during your stay in Nuwakot.
There is one health post and one private pharmacy in Nuwakot village. You can find hospitals, private clinics, nursing homes and pharmacies in Bidur, Battar and Trisuli.
People and custom
Ethnic diversity and custom of Nuwakot make this pristine village very fascinating. Majority of locals of Nuwakot district are Newars (caste group) but you will also find other caste people like Magars, Gurungs, Tamangs, Brahmans and Chhetris. Hindu is the main religion of this place. There is one gompa in Nuwakot village and few Buddhists. Regardless of ethnic background or religion, people of Nuwakot are very hospitable, warm and friendly people. They revere their guests as gods. You must however be very sensitive to their custom and belief. When you are in Nuwakot, you must dress casually in non-body revealing clothes. You should not express your emotions publicly like kissing and hugging as such expressions are regarded obscene in Nuwakot. Do not enter temples without permissions. When you enter inside a house, take off your shoes and respect their culture.
With the restoration of democracy, Nepal is reliving the bygone peaceful days. State of Emergency in the nation has been lifted. Maoists have come into mainstream politics which has come as a pleasant relief for those innocent rural people who were heartwrenchingly displaced by the insurgency. With this, Nuwakot district has become a safe place to travel. When you visit Nuwakot durbar and spot army marching around, you may feel bit intimidated. But please feel safe and remember that the army is there with good intentions only for safeguarding the cultural heritage of Nuwakot village. In case of any emergency or any information, contact: Explore Himalaya Travel & AdventureAmrit Marg, Bhagwan Bahal, ThamelKathmandu, NepalTel: 977-1-4418 100 : 977-1-1118 400Fax: 977-1-4412 888
You can get local buses from Kathmandu to Nuwakot at the cost of Nepali Rupees 115 and it normally takes 3-4 hours of drive. You can also hire bus and other private vehicles from Bidur, Battar and Trisuli.
Nepali currency is termed as Rupee. Rupees come in the form of bank paper note with Rs.1, 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 inscribed on the notes. Nepali coins also come in 25 paisa, 50 paisa, 1 rupee, 5 rupee and 10 rupee coins. You can have your money exchanged at banks and hotels. Prior to any transaction, foremost inquire about the commission and charges that will be deducted for the money exchange at Nepal currency exchange rate. Banks are usually open from 10.00 am to 3.30 pm Sundays through Thursdays and from 10.00 am to 12.00 pm on Fridays. Saturdays are weekend holiday. You will not find any banks in Nuwakot village but as you step down to Battar and Bidur, you will spot some banks.
Departure from Nepal
When you depart Nepal, you have to pay airport tax of Nepali rupees 1,800.00 approximately. Payment has to be made in Nepali currency not in dollars.
VOLUNTEERS IN THE PAST
On 1st March 2007 we received a volunteer from UK. He worked as a English Teacher at Bhairabi Higher Secondary School, Nuwakot for 3 months. Here is what he has to say about his stay at Nuwakot. “My name is Ben Brown and I am 24yrs old. I am from the UK and have spent three months this year (07) teaching English at Bhairabi Higher Secondary School, and a few weeks at ASBM boarding school, in Nuwakot, North East from Kathmandu by 5hrs. The village of Nuwakot is what you would expect a village in Europe to be, before commuters started to move into the counrtyside. Every body knows every body and every one is very friendly. On going running in the evenings pupils would say good evening as you ran past the various houses in the area. Nuwakot sits upon a hill over looking the towns of Battar, Biddur and Trishuli. Its very closed off from the outside world, but within easy reach of the towns. The security situation is nothing to worry about, at the time I was there, everything was quiet in the area. The only military and police pressence was in the town of Biddur and a small group of soilders in the Temple areas, which are the only things which could cause some issues. Being in Nuwakot around the Nepali new year, April 15th, would be the best time to go. It is getting hotter, but if you want to expereince the Hindu religion and cultures of the area, these few months are packed with ceromanies and religious events. The staff are very helpful and always there with a good morning. The same with the pupils. They may be a little noisey and talkative, but I would put that down to enthusiasm and excitment, rather than being bad students. If students were like this in the West, teachers hair would stay its natural color for longer and less stress wrinkles would appear. If you want to teach English in a forigen culture and setting in the foothills of the Himalayas, this would have to be the place. It has been a great expereince living at the village and I will take away some great memories. You can email me if you would like any more info. “
Explore Himalaya works with the motto ‘Development through Tourism’. Keeping in line with this motto, the company has conducted several development interventions through Explore Himalaya Project Community Service Project. One such is Volunteering program in Nuwakot district.
Wendy Gillian Green & Wai-Ping Sung, two British citizens, participated in this program through our UK agent, ‘Different Travel Company’ to make a positive change for the development of Nuwakot District. In the company of a staff from Explore Himalaya, they arrived Nuwakot on 28th August 2006. They assisted the Health Assistants at Nuwakot Health Post for 2 days. On the third day, they tutored English Language to Grade 6 students at Shree Bhairabi Secondary Higher School.
The British volunteers returned to Kathmandu on 1st September 2006 with cherishing memories of their stay at ‘Home Stay’ and the warmth and hospitality of Nuwakot people. Wai-Ping Sung was so moved and overwhelmed by the educational status of Nuwakot District that she has promised to sponsor 2 students belonging to marginalized, deprived and poor group from Shree Bhairabi Higher School for their education after 10 grade.
Wendy decided on her own initiative to donate for the welfare of Nuwakot Health Post to improve its Immunization facilities. These two volunteers have also showed eagerness and willingness to assist anyone who seeks to participate in the volunteer program. If you have any queries about our volunteering program and you are eager to know more about Nuwakot, you can contact Ping at firstname.lastname@example.org and Wendy at –
Explore Himalaya is very much thankful to Wendy & Ping for contributing in our cause and for helping the deprived group of Nepal.
FAQs ON VOLUNTEER PROGRAM
1) What is Explore Himalaya Community Service Program (EHCSP)?
It is a solely private project initiated by Explore Himalaya Travel & Adventure, which aims to let rural people of Nepal benefit from tourism. This program has been conceived to empower disadvantage, marginalized & deprived people especially in the rural part of the country through different forms of community service oriented projects. Explore Himalaya Travel & Adventure wants to contribute a part of its profit to support the project and also hopes to get contributions from tourists groups, individuals, national and international institutions etc who seek to make a meaningful contribution for the sustainable development of Nepalese Rural Communities. Explore Himalaya Community Service Program (EHCSP) works as a non-profit charity organization.
2) What are the major achievements of Explore Himalaya Community Service Program? There are some projects that EHCSP had successfully achieved in the past such as- Renovation of Prayer Hall at Bhairabi Temple, Publication of Golden Jubilee Magazine for Bharavi Secondary High School, the Science Laboratory Project, Computer Lab Project. You can get more detailed information about these projects in the site https://www.explorehimalaya.com/achievements
As Explore Himalaya Community Service Project gives the first priority to enhance the educational field; it is currently supporting a secondary school at Nuwakot named Shree Bhairabi Secondary High School. For more details please click on: https://www.explorehimalaya.com/achievements
3) Where are the projects working areas?
At present, several projects under Explore Himalaya Community Service Program are being implemented in the village of Nuwakot. Nuwakot lies 2790 ft. above the sea level and is 75kms North West of Kathmandu and 5 kilometers from Trisuli Bazaar which is the last little town on the way to the Langtang area. In Shree Bhairabi Secondary School, we had conducted Science Laboratory project and Computer laboratory Project and presently both of the projects are using by the school. If you wish to know more, please visit: https://www.explorehimalaya.com/project-location 4) Why should I be associated with Explore Himalaya Community Service Program? EHCSP provides the direct approach to the local community/the targeted group. You can contribute your time, ideas and donations directly to the targeted group. 5) Do you take volunteers? Yes, we take volunteers. This project is focused to the local villagers and the local school and will run through volunteers. Therefore, we are looking for volunteers who can provide their time and help us with new ideas and thinking.
6) How can I contribute as a volunteer?
There are many things that you can contribute as a volunteer at the project location. You can work in a school, work for local community as a volunteer. For the detailed information, please visit- https://www.explorehimalaya.com/nepal_community_service After you have gone through our website and if you agree with our projects and terms & conditions you should register with us.
7) How do I register as a volunteer?
For your registration with us as a volunteer, please fill up our Volunteer Registration form. We have started the deposit as charge for the service because in the past we have endured with many people enquiring for the volunteering and not responding later even after such a long correspondence & devoting time. We have made a policy to take deposit fee of USD 250 or ₤ 140 to enroll with us as a volunteer. If you have less than a month for volunteering, please pay deposit of USD 175 or ₤ 50. If you had read all the information that we have provided you through this website and you are genuinely interested in our program and want to go with more details, please register first and contact us at email@example.com
8) I have recently graduated from high school. I wish to be involved in your project. Am I eligible for your volunteering program?
Yes, you are most welcome in our program. Please elucidate how long you want to work and what field/area you want to get involve into. You can fill up our registration form to supply us with your information. We shall then match an appropriate program for you and let you know.
9) How can I be ensured that my funds will reach to the target groups?
EHCSP is a solely private project focused in the rural part of the country and it works directly with the target group. Besides that, to keep update and assure our contributors and donors we provide progress report as well.
10) How can I access all the information regarding volunteering program?
You can go through our Volunteer Manual prepared by one of the volunteers from The Netherlands- Alice Hulshof, who visited Nuwakot as a volunteer in March 2006. Please click on (Website-manual) for the Volunteer Manual she had made. If you want to contact her directly feel free to emails her at firstname.lastname@example.org
11) What qualification do I need to work in the project?
There is not any encoded qualification to work as a volunteer in this project as there are various working fields you can get engaged into. We can enroll you in one of the working area according to your interest.
12) How long should I be committed to the project as a volunteer?
It depends upon your time limitation. We have many options for volunteering which varies time limitation from minimum 1day to 1 year or more. Please elucidate your time that you are interested to spend for volunteering and we will furnish you with more details.
13) While staying in Nepal as a volunteer do you look after my Visa and other official papers?
You have to pay yourself for your visa and insurance and other official papers.
14) How long do I have to work in a day?
There are 6 working days a week and you have to work minimum 2-3hours a day. It will depend upon what kind of work you are doing and how much the school student or the community is involved into your work. 15) I want to contribute for your cause. But I cannot be there physically. Is there any way I can help? There is a lot to do within your short time or with out being there physically, Shree Bhairabi Secondary School needs many things, you can donate money, you can bring books for the library, bring teaching / educational material like audio / visual, blank papers, color pencils, paint, any computer software, science material or anything that the children or the community can use. We do deliver it to the projects/field you desire directly. If you think there are other ways you can help us and please feel free to share with us. We heartedly welcome your suggestions.
16) I am interested to volunteer as a teacher in a Nepali school. Do I need to have experience of similar kind or any specific qualification? What process should I follow?
Yes, you are most welcome for this position. You can choose the subject you want to teach such as – English, Mathematics, Accounts, Science, Physical Science, Economics, Extra Activities, computer instruction and other extra activities such as Art, Cultural Show, Different kinds of contests etc.
You don’t need specific qualification for the program. But we would prefer if you have some experience in the field you are interested in.
For English Teaching, it is preferred to have ESL (English as Second Language) Training.
You have to choose the level that you want to teach as well. There are two levels – Primary level (4-12years) and Secondary Level (12-18years). There is a fixed curriculum and syllabus according to the school standard. During the teaching period, you have to be within the syllabus and also you can use your own teaching material and methods. The school teachers will also assist you in this.
We also conduct English Language class outside the school for the people who are eager to learn & improve their English Language. We have more details in the site https://www.explorehimalaya.com/nepal_community_service
You should fill up Volunteering Registration Form and pay the deposit of USD 240 to register with us as a volunteer.
17) I want to get involved with a cause that would benefit the local community of Nepal. What should I do?
No problem, the local community is more conscious and willing for changes through education and awareness programs. What they need is the means. For the local community, there are many areas that you can come up with different kinds of programs such as- Adult education, health education, agriculture, nature conservation, paternity education and many more.
18) I want to fund school. But how will I know that my funds have reached and benefited the school?
Funding or donating school is easy. If you are in Kathmandu, you can contact us at our offices of Gift for Aid Nepal and Explore Himalaya Travel & Adventure are at Thamel, Kathmandu. We will deliver your fund and donations directly to the project- location.
Our tour guides and drivers in Lhasa and the rest of Tibet did an excellent job. They were friendly, knowledgeable, good humored and we had a feeling that they did their best to make it a very good trip!