After a period of 3 months in Nepal, I can tell you; this was an amazing experience. For me, but more special for the children. Their happiness and joy during the arts and music classes, is the best to experience everyday. Shree Janata Primary school, located in Dhading district, is a government school, where the children only read, write and copy.
The school building is divided in 5 classrooms, 1 library and an office. The classes are classified by age. And the teachers have their own specialty which they teach in every group. There are 3 teachers and 1 principle, who is also teaching. That means that every hour a different class don’t have a teacher, but just make their homework. The good thing about this is, that I could take over this class and doing arts and music every hour with a different group. The way of education in Nepal is teaching thru books. They read together and for remembering texts, they sing the words. During festivals they sing and dance the traditional songs. Playing, arts, music and social activities is not included in their education system. This is why I came to work in the school. I believe for growing in personality; getting to know more about yourself and the world around you, children need to do arts and music.
Through Peace For People Nepal, I got the chance to make a change for the children at Shree Janata Primary school, for a period of 3 months. With donations from family and friends, I brought and bought materials for the school. A lot of arts materials and music instruments. When I arrived at the school, I could start immediately with the activities. The first month explaining all the new materials, and teaching songs, and after that I showed them different activities which they can choose to do. In this way the children could do whatever they want in that moment. Its a stimulation for their creativity and it makes them more happy to be free to do whatever they want to do. Working together with the teachers is an challenge, because they are not educated by teaching arts or music. This is why I showed them every activity I was planning to do with the children. Its good to show them the happiness of the children while doing arts/music. They got inspired and also are interested in doing arts or music. Thats why I will stay in contact, while I’m back in the Netherlands. Every week I send them an activity they can teach the children and they send me the pictures of the process and results. It means that the children at Shree Janata Primary school got arts class every week on Friday. This is a great development what we achieved in 3 months. Its really special to be part of the Nepalese culture. They treated me with full respect and positivist.
The way of living; all together with the family, but also with all the neighbors, gave me the feeling of always being save. In the Netherlands I’m used to a lot of privacy, but also individualism was a part of my live. We all live separated, need our own space, don’t share everything and spend a lot of time behind our own front door. The differences are enormous and for both ways of living is something good and bad. But their sharing happiness and goodness gave me peace during my time in Nepal. The traditions of their believes and their food where really good. Eating rice and curry by hand is something you get used to. Sitting on the ground, sleeping in a shared room, using cold showers, eating fresh vegetables and drinking clear water where part of my live the last 3 months. And there was so much more what makes me happy, and also difficult parts because of our different cultures. Especially language; not knowing and speaking the Nepali language enough for having good conversations. But in 3 months I understood and spook the basics. Singing the Nepali songs during the festivals and having fun with Nepali friends and family, make my time in Nepal complete.
The positive vibe while dancing and singing will always be a good memory for me. The upcoming two months I will write a volunteer program for working at Shree Janata Primary school. I want to coordinate this program and send new volunteers who will teach arts and/or music for a period of 3-6 months. If you are interested, talented by working with children, want to make a change and if you are excited to live in another culture and learn more about Nepal, please send me an email and we will discuss your possibilities.