In 2009 I had just graduated high school and a friend and I set off to India. Eventually I made my way on my own in Nepal and ended up volunteering in a home for displaced children where their families were affected by political violence and most families had lost a parent which means they could not afford to send their children to school.
One of the kids really stood out to me, Nirmal was his name. He was the oldest kid there. Most of the kids his age end up leaving the home in search of work that does not require an education. This is where I saw the gap! These kids don't even see the point to make it through high school since they won't be able to pay for university so they drop out and the poverty cycle continues.
Nirmal stood out to me because he was so determined to change his fate. Being from an untouchable cast and coming from extreme poverty, his dream of becoming a doctor was wearing extremely thin. But his determination and promise to his mother to make their life better motivated him to keep going.
This drive I saw in him touched me and made me think how is it that I have every opportunity in the world to be who ever I want but this kid has no opportunities. At 18 I was thinking that the person I want to be is someone who gives these kids a real life changing opportunity. I could, along with my resources (people like you) change a whole cycle of poverty. And not only change his life but he will become a doctor and help others and pay it forward for others. This is actually closing the poverty cycle. So I made a promise to him that I would fund his education.
A few years later I tried to find Nirmal with my contacts of the home he was staying in. I found out that the place had been shut down and my hope was wearing thin. Some months later I got a friend request on Facebook! "hello sis how are you?" It was Nirmal. He NEVER asked me for anything but was just happy to be in contact again. I found out he was still in high school. He was living with 5 other boys in a one bedroom apartment they were working construction and he was eating rice twice a day from the generosity of his working brother. All while still holding an A+ average! I quickly through a third party trusted contact raised some funds to get him into the school hostel and on a meal plan!
Today Nirmal is in second year Medical School and top of his class! EON (Educate Orphans Nepal) is now a registered Canadian charity that can issue tax receipts. And we are on our way to changing more lives. Since my personal life has been unstable right now I am focusing on following through with my first promise to help him finish his degree. Eventually I hope to travel more and recruit others but for now Nirmal has 3 more years of school left. His school costs about 4500USD a year and I am hoping to raise this in advanced to guarantee his spot in his professional exams.
Wealth is relative and you have every opportunity to become whomever you want to be because you were lucky enough to be born where you are from. Even 20$ helps make a dream into a sustainable and pay it forward reality! I take absolutely no salary from donations. ALL proceeds go to school bills. I am more than happy to answer any questions you might have and I will post updates here.
Thank you greatly for your support. You are participating in changing a life today.
Founder and Director of Educate Orphans Nepal
- Chantal Parent
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