Alpha at SS Alban & Stephen Catholic Church in St Albans
Hands Together - Tiplyang Project
help themselves out of poverty
the home of Honorary Lieutenant Tul Bahadur Pun VC. In his memory and that
of Major Jimmy Lumley and Captain Michael Allmand VC,the Allmand and Lumley
families funded the building of the new school by the Gurkha Welfare Trust
(see background for more details). Elizabeth Allmand responded to requests
for further help by establishing Hands Together - Tiplyang Project which
is working with the villagers of Tiplyang and the neighbouring communities
of Banduk and Dosalle to provide ongoing support.
Mike Crawshaw in Nepal !!! Parishioner Mike Crawshaw is now in Nepal visiting the communities
that are receiving aid from Hands Together. He's already had to climb 1,500m
to reach Tiplyang, Banduk, and some of the other more remote villages... AND
he has to get back down again despite having undergone knee surgery earlier
in the year!
Here's Mike's blog!! ...... 13th October
A final visit to the tiplyang school. Joined in the morning assembly exercise
to the amusement of the children. Then the science teacher- a clever, well-educated
man- asked for ideas for a science class. I asked for the school science
equipment. He produced it from two shoe boxes. A microscope, a magnet, a
modelling knife and a few other things. Any ideas? Yes, we'll get you some
science equipment. Lovely farewell from teachers then all the children came
out to wave and shout goodbye. Then presents and sincere best wishes exchanged
with the head and his wife with whom i had stayed. Their daughter who has
been invaluable escorted me on the bus to beni. Another goodbye. But
in truth it will, it must, only be farewell to Tiplyang.!
...... 12th October
5.30 am. First glimpse of light over
the valley top, two or three thousand metres up. A gong sounds. Rooster crows.
Bells and morning prayers at the shrine and in houses. Now a radio blaring
out nepali traditional music. 6.30 breakfast over and every member of every
family starts to work in the house, garden or fields. School starts at ten
so that work can be done first. I will be heading back then. I hope they let
me go quietly. But i suspect not.
...... 10th October
Can't sleep for thinking. Yesterday, after another garland visit I was asked
to teach 'a little english or science'. Ended up teaching the rest of the
day. Even the older class thought stars were smaller than the sun. Nobody
had heard of an atom. One child had heard of lionel messi. Then the teachers
asked me to explain the scrabble we had bought them last year. I refereed
games full of laughter, two and three letter words. The english teachers managed
four! Nobody argued. I have not heard a voice raised in anger anytime. After
tea there was a final meeting with the heads of the schools and village development
committees to finish the proposed action plan we have been working on all
Day 5, 8th October
All is well. I have had a warm welcome in tiplyang. Beautiful village
and lovely people. Had very good meetings. I have made it to banduk! The
mountains are incredible. All downhill from here!
Day 4, 7th October
That was a long day. Lots of very informative but challenging meetings with
various education, welfare, development and tourism experts in Pokhara.
I thought i was getting an easy end to the day attending a local rotarary
club presentation at six. But then I found out that I was the presentation!
Then- not knowing what a grumpy, anti-social Yorkshire-man looks like - they
invited me to stay after and have tea and cake. I thought- let them eat cake!
- where is the wine? But obviously I did recognise these were dedicated local
experts who are of the same wavelength and will support our work. Then
I shopped for school provisions and finalised the trip to Tiplyang tomorrow.
This is where the business end really starts.
Day 3, 6th October....
Well I have survived the first 'relatively dangerous' internal
flight to Pokhara- though I would take a flight on a turboprop over a journey
by taxi any day. Interesting demonstration outside the airport. Drums and
shouting and people on hunger strike about the idea of expanding Pokhara
airport to become an international one. No. It's not what you think. These
people WANT to live beside a bigger airport. I gave them details of estate
agents in Hounslow.
Day 2, 5th October....
Just had the most frightening taxi ride of my life from katmandu
airport to the hotel. Friday night rush hour for five million on rutted streets
built for carts with no line down the middle. I think they mostly drive
on the left but it was difficult to tell! There are no traffic lights and
few roundabouts. Cars just honk past each other at junctions- first to blink
gives way. No pavement so pedestrians in the mix as well. We clipped one
man and the driver didnt stop- just told me to push the wing mirror
back out. Several other near misses. All perfectly normal apparently!
1, 4th October....
Thanks to everyone for all the encouragement and prayers ahead of my trip.
I must say that when I discovered Anne Rose had asked for prayers I wondered
whether she knew something I didn’t. I had a quick look on the map to make
sure Tiplyang is in Nepal and not Afghanistan. It is. So I am flying out
tonight. Our partner on the ground, Jyoti Gurung, has fixed up a fantastic
schedule of meetings in Pokhara for Sunday and Monday with workers co-operatives,
education and development authorities etc. And then it’s off to the hills
to visit Tiplyang, Dosalle and Banduk (go on- see if you can find them on
a map). I’m particularly looking forward to Banduk. Anne’s sister described
it as almost medieval. It has no electricity, no running water and it’s probably
best not to think what the loos are like. Still, so long as it has a pub
with Sky Sports I’ll put up with anything. Thanks again. Mike.
What is Hands Together doing?
- Aided by trusted local experts we are supporting
projects initiated by the community
- Paying for school uniforms and school meals
- Employing a villager to promote basic healthcare
- Paying for the training of 24 teachers
- Providing school equipment
With your help the work begun can continue
and develop. We could
a play garden for nursery children
additional teachers' salaries to allow children to
reach School Leaving Certificate Level.
with villagers further ways of improving the
health of their community
business and trade in partnership with
the community so it becomes self-sufficient
An Evening with Joanna
On Friday, 30 November 2012, our Patron Joanna Lumley will
host a fund raising evening at the Abbey Theatre in St Albans. Drinks
and Canapes followed by a talk from Joanna about the project and much
more besides! Tickets at £15 from the box office on 01727 857861,
or online at www.abbeytheatre.org.uk, or click here
to download a poster/leaflet
The Trustees & The Patron
The trustees of this charity - Anne Rose, Mary Corbett and
Mike – are all parishioners. The Patron of the charity is Joanna Lumley
who went out to the communities herself earlier in the year (photo with
Anne Rose and children of the school attached)