Story about the project - or just simple - how the project was born

Suspension bridge between Chaile and Geling, Upper Mustang

On my first trek in 2017 in Mustang, a Tibetan valley in the western part of Nepal, I met the trekking guide Sonam Sherpa. His commitment to his village and particularly to the school, which was badly damaged by the earthquake in 2015, impressed me greatly.We started to discuss possible ways of supporting the Sherpa community. The experiences I have gathered from my professional work in international projects in education made it obvious to transfer knowledge to school improvement and teaching methods. A first visit in January 2018 in Hile revealed a great need  for improved teaching methods.

Besides improving the school, the village strivesto increase environmental awareness and makes every effort to pass the Sherpa language and culture along to future generations.

Around 160'000 Sherpas (Sher = East, pa = Ethnie) live in Nepal, especially in the east of Nepal, in the two districts of Solu Khumbu and Dolakha as well as a big community in Bouddha in Kathmandu. Most of them are Buddhist and speak Nepali as well astheir own language, called Sherpa. The Sherpa language has been iliterate until recently. Therefore the effort to keep Sherpa culture alive has been difficult.

Charang Chorten, Upper Mustang

Boudha Stupa, Kathmandu

Nepal's topography, climate, religion and population are very heterogenous. The three topographical regions encompass the Terai in the south, the hills in the middle and the Himalaya mountains in the north. The climate zones depend on the regions, from tropical to sub-tropical, moderate, sub-arctic and arctic. 

In 2015 Nepal adopted a new secular constitution. The constitution ensures, among other things, equal rights for citizens in a country with a long-established history of discrimination based on caste, ethnicity, religion and gender. The civil war in Nepal, waged between 1996 and 2006 by insurgent Maoist forces against the government at the time, led to the death of an estimated 13,000 civilians and the disappearancesof more than 1,300 individuals. The Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2006 led to an interim constitution and the election in 2008 of a Constitutent Assembly tasked with drafting a lasting constitution to ensure equal rights for Nepal's citizens (Amnesty International, 2015). 

The majority of Nepal's population (approximately 30 million) are Hindus (80.6%) and Buddhists (10.7%). Other Nepali religious minorities include Muslims, Kirats, Christians and Jains. Nepal includes approximately 125 ethnic groups and 123 spoken languages (census 2011). Life expectancy has risen from 49.6 years (1981) to 66.6 years (2011). Poverty is still high, especially in rural area, where 80% of the Nepalis live.

Tiji Festival in Lo Mantang, Mustang