BOO! And, Happy Autumn too!
BOO! And, Happy Autumn too!
BOO time has arrived. Beautiful Fall colors are here!
It is the glorious season of Fall which includes the BOO! season. We wish you a colorful, enjoyable season with all the pleasure possible. We will share what we have going on in our efforts for the rural areas we serve in Nepal.
Halloween is not a day celebrated or even known much in Nepal. We welcome the advent of Autumn with the fun Halloween is for us. We get to have parties and have fun dressing up and overwhelming our systems with sugar in many forms. What is the form you choose?
What could be spookier than Halloween? Actually, there are many things as we have all witnessed with fires, floods, earthquakes, large losses for so many people in this country, and around our world. There are spookier things than Halloween spiders, ghosts, and ghouls. There is COVID which has changed our ability to attend parties and celebrate so many things we are familiar with including traveling and visiting our loved ones.
We can sweeten our lives by helping others we desire to help.
R Star continues to reach out to Nepal successfully. We choose Nepal because of its horrific standing as the 2nd poorest country in Asia. How would you like to help us help them?
Here is an update on how we are going forward: We on this side of the world continue making pad kits ready for shipping via personal couriers to the women. We have arranged for a Rotary club to distribute the kits to our village females along with training them with proper care of the products and personal hygiene. Within the kit we have instructions/directions both in English and with graphics depicting each step. The women will be given the pattern to make more, and better yet, to create an income-producing business selling the kits they make to other villages for their women.
We have shared how we have two women, Beth J
who does the enormous job of cutting the patterns from fabric by hand, and Marilynn G who turned 91
this month does the sewing and snaps. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
Mike K has donated 100% of the microfiber, the absorbent filler which makes the pads work.
Cyndie S donated 1000 drawstring bags! She is seeking small waterproof bags to include as part of our kits from businesses she works with and 1000 cotton panties too. She is a rock’n’ woman!
We are pleased we are able to move forward during the long season of COVID stay-home requirements.
Our board member Siddhartha continues to monitor when we can begin shipping the kits via personal couriers traveling to Nepal. He also gifted us the flannel yardage to make the pads and does research for us too where and when needed.
Nepal continues to struggle enormously. Usually busy areas as Thamel which I know are totally shut down.
Without tourists, they closed their shops ending their income and ability to support their families. Many who were doing decently are now hungry. Of course, we know the same is true in our country and around the world. We have much to pray for while the virus continues to plague us.
The longest holiday in Nepal began. Dashain, the 17th, ending the 26th, their grandest festival is celebrated with prayers, blessings, gifts, and food. Houses are cleaned and decorated beautifully prior to the holiday. (Dashainsymbolizes the victory of good over evil. For followers of Shaktism, the major following of Hinduism, it represents the victory of the goddess Durga. In Hindu mythology, the demon Mahishasura had created terror in the devaloka (the world where gods live) but Durga killed the rakshas (demon)).
Tihar begins November 14th called Deepavali in India. (Tihar is the 2nd major Hindu festival which is celebrated for five days in October or early November yearly. It is the festival of lights which brings the worship of Laxmi, the Goddess of Wealth along with the worship of dog, crow, and cow respectively). Both are joyous holidays where they visit their friends and family, eating, dancing, and giving small gifts to each other. This year their holidays will be subdued, but I have no doubt they will all find ways to be joyful. Life is required to be different at this time, holidays, or not. Safety first.
Our right-hand man in Nepal, Rabin, who will be celebrating his birthday on the 26th, just as Dashain ends. Happy birthday dear, Rabindra!
The work for the rural roads continues. It has picked up again with the monsoon season over. Blacktopping is next.
Rabin reports the road size has doubled. He finds it easier to ride. Once public transportation has resumed, the passengers will be arriving faster and certainly in more comfort as so of the goats and chickens traveling on the buses.
The pipped in water project continues, but at a far slower rate than desired because the municipalities are closed due to COVID.
The difference the water makes will be measurable in the health of the village population as well as livestock health. The women will have many hours to do other things than walking 5-7 times a day to bring in enough water for their family’s needs as well as their livestock. About 10-14 hours each day regardless of weather.
World news about China-Nepal: Nepal is weathering another situation regarding the Chinese redirecting Nepal’s water to manage the great agricultural expanse in China at this time. The water is diverted to such a degree that what India was getting and needs, will not be arriving. To put it mildly, it is a hostile takeover without much recourse from Nepal available at this time against the giant.
The lockdown has lifted lightly, but COVID numbers are on the rise as testing is measured whereas it wasn’t previously. Another full lockdown is probable which doesn’t lend to their economy bettering or ease in life. The Nepalese are a hearty lot and will get through this and other matters.
A 13-year old being prepared for her wedding
Over 56% of Nepali girls are married before the age of 18, often to men who are much older. Although child marriage was outlawed in Nepal, the practice continues and there is no enforcement of the prohibition. The tradition of marrying infants is dying out, but child marriage is still a serious problem. Nepal has the third-highest rate of child marriage In Asia. Children are married to avoid a “love” marriage, to protect family honor, to control sexuality, create a new income-earner in the family, assure marriage within the caste, and to assure the purity of the bride. By Sandy Ramsey, MA, LMFT, LPC, and R Star’s Board
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Happy Autumn and Halloween!