Can you make a difference in less than a week?
When volunteering in schools you hope what you do can make a lasting impact. It’s pretty impossible to do that in a couple of weeks, let alone a few days. Regardless of whether our visit to the school would make any lasting benefit to the children of Kathmandu, I knew that it would for the 8 of us.
It’s pretty special seeing a 20 year old guys heart melt when a tiny child with a runny nose smiles at them!
Once again, Lisa and I were extremely proud of the way our team got their hands dirty. (as long as they sanitized them before eating) Each member of the team took the initiative to get involved wherever possible.
Not task (or student) was too big or too small.
These kids run on Energizer batteries and the team played with them non-stop.
We, danced, sung, learnt Nepalese, taught Maths, drew pictures, played cards, did magic tricks and spent time visiting the children’s homes.
If the boys had nothing to do they found ways to make themselves useful without any instruction.
They were flexible with their plans and ideas, even when it meant teaching Year 11 Maths to a genius in Grade 5
Or conducting random head lice checks with your your tongue!?
Most of all the team provided an atmosphere of fun and love for the children to enjoy…
Okay, most of the time!
There was talk of kidnapping a few students to take back to Australia. “This one would fit without any excess luggage charges”, Kobby said.
We tried the kids on for size.
Being sure to test for the speed at which we could escape if suddenly approached by the police!
Hahaha Kidnapping. But seriously!
While I certainly don’t believe ‘West knows best’, part of me seriously does wish these children could come back to Australia to experience all the opportunities and advantages we have. Imagine these kids could do in Australia.
When a Grade 2 girl can almost outrun you. When you watch her tackling boys twice her size without reserve you can’t help but think ‘what if?’. What if she had leisure time to play competitive sport? What if she had proper nutrition? What if she had someone to train her? What if she lived in Australia?
When a Grade 5 can learn about indices from someone speaking a foreign language, then stay after school to be given more Math’s problems you can’t help but wonder. Is the cure to cancer is locked away in someone’s brain who will never be given the chance to do anything other than housework and manual labour? What if he were in Australia?
Opportunity. Who wants it?
Thomas Edison once said that “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work”. Well, not in Nepal.
A child walks 8km each way for the chance to have an education. They do all the housework and later that night cook dinner for their parents who have been labouring all day. All of this in primary school no less.
We have so many opportunities here in Australia. What are you doing with yours?