The Pokhara Tibetan Youth Project
The children of Tibetan refugees in Nepal are growing up with even worse problems than their parents had. These young men and women – mostly teenagers now – were born in Nepal, but due to pressure from the Chinese government since 1989, Nepal never gave them birth certificates, will not recognize them as citizens, and refuses to recognize them as refugees. In fact, the Nepalese government will give them no identity papers of any kind at all. They have truly become people without a country.
As a result, they cannot travel within Nepal. They cannot leave the country. They cannot attend local schools. They cannot own property, not even a motorbike – not that they have the money to buy one because they also cannot get a job outside of the refugee camp!
Geshe Pema Dorjee saw their plight and is organizing The Pokhara Tibetan Youth Project to help them.
1st Phase: Tibetan Youth CenterIn April 2012, we visited the almost-completed Tibetan Youth Center construction site. (See photos) With the help and generosity of all those who donated to TBCA for this Project, we raised the $27,400 needed for the reconstruction of an abandoned carpet factory in the Jampaling refugee camp in Pokhara, Nepal. We are happy to report that as of July 2012, the reconstructed building is now complete and functioning as the Tibetan Youth Center. The Center provides a place for young Tibetan refugees to find solutions for their problems with the help of professionals from around the world. These professionals have already volunteered to help in areas such as mental health counseling, employment counseling, and practical training for job skills.
2nd Phase: A Small Cheese Factory
Much thought was given as to what practical skills should be taught to these jobless young Tibetans. The initial focus will be on the skills necessary to run a small cheese factory. (Other skills will include beekeeping for honey.) An expert from Israel has already visited the settlement and met with the refugees. They are excited about this phase of the project and believe that they can sell cheese to the local hotels and restaurants. The Israeli expert will donate his time to teaching the necessary skills.
The animals and their shelter will cost $12,370. The cost of renovating and air-conditioning a building at the settlement to become the cheese factory will cost $9,466. The equipment will cost $7,033. The total cost, therefore, will be $28,869. Swedish donors have already contributed $7,500. This means that we still need to raise $21,369.
Drug Rehabilitation Center
A new Project for 2012 was our support for a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center located in Kathmandu, Nepal. Geshe Pema Dorjee introduced us to this residential facility that serves men and women from Tibet and Nepal. We visited it with Geshe Pema Dorjee in April, and their dedication, work, and success is inspiring. With $487 from your donations, TBCA purchased and delivered to the Center 200 urine drug test kits and a sophisticated breathalyzer. The Director, Mr. Tsering Wangdu, a former drug addict himself, was extremely grateful and is already using the kits to assure compliance with their treatment program which is modeled on the Twelve Step Program.
We need your help:
Geshe Pema Dorjee’s ongoing Projects need your support. These include:
- bringing desperately needed medical care to the most vulnerable people in remote areas, especially the very young and the very old
- providing a school for poor, rural children
- creating and supporting a safe house for young homeless girls
- running and maintaining a monastery and school
- creating and building a nunnery and school
- providing potable water, toilets, sanitation facilities, and irrigation to remote villages
- helping to solve the problems caused by traditional, rural stoves that cause blindness, lung disease, pollution, and deforestation
Please help with these and so many other truly lifesaving Projects of Geshe Pema Dorjee.
Please help today by clicking here to use your credit card through PayPal. Or just send a check to Tibetan Buddhist Charitable Aid, Inc. at 808 Sleepy Hollow Road, Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510