I was lucky enough to spend three weeks at Life Vision Academy this year, working on a production of The Tempest with some of the children from the school. I was welcomed enormously by everyone at the school, the children and the staff and immediately felt at home there.
The main focus of my work was collaborating with a group around 25 children and introducing them to The Tempest by William Shakespeare. Myself and Hazel, my directing partner, told the children the story and then through drama games and improvisation techniques, the children got to know the play and we managed to cast the show within a few days.
This was my sixth return to Nepal – but my first visit to the new school in Godavari. I visited the school at its old site in 2014, and had photos from that visit. Some of the children were now young adults, working at the school in different capacities. Early on we felt part of an extended family.
Florence and I had preliminary plans to recreate a children’s version of Shakespeare’s The Tempest in 3 weeks - a tall order. Our little team of 25 children threw themselves into the drama session with great enthusiasm, enjoying the warm ups the singing exercises and the drama games…
Last summer, we had the privilege of welcoming many visitors to Life Vision Academy. By helping out with various aspects of our school, Gibby, who was 10 at the time, became our youngest volunteer in CYF history! Gibby is an experienced filmmaker, with sharp, funny commentary and excellent editing skills. Check out the short documentary he made during his time in Nepal, and see what it's like to immerse in Life Vision Academy as an American 10-year-old.
We are honored to share that CYF team member Jen James received the Voices Of The Year Courage Award for her work at Crisis Text Line and as author of My Life As a Survivor. She was honored alongside 15 other extremely influential women of today: Bob Bland, Carmen Perez, Linda Sarsour, Tamika Mallory, Jodi Kantor, Megan Twohey, Gwyneth Paltrow, Chelsea Clinton, Tarana Burke, Krista Suh, Cleo Wade, Daysha Edewi, Kimberly Zapata, Jessamyn Stanley, and Brynn Elliott.
My host mom and I went to the Nutcracker. It was fun watching with her and the music was so nice. It was Russian music and and it was such a nice night. I had so much fun! in the evening for dinner my host mom, her friend and I went out to a Nepali restaurant. I met a Nepali girl and I talked with a girl in Nepali. It was fun talking to her. We had a lot of yummy Nepali food.
In 2015 I attended an event held in Manhattan, New York City. It was here that I first came across Haushala Creatives. To my surprise, a familiar fabric seemed to be the recurring theme of their merchandise – the Nepalese Dhaka. I remember being overcome by a strange emotion, like I had somehow become misplaced in time and space – or in the words of Keanu Reeves: a glitch in the matrix! But all jokes aside, the sight of the Dhaka evoked a wistful sentiment; one that carried me thousands of miles back to the mountains, hills and plains of Nepal.
I went to meet my neighbors' two little kids because my host mom said they really wanted to play. I missed my little brothers and sisters from back home so I spent time with them playing games. My host dad and I went out for a walk with the dogs. It was super cold so we went to have hot chocolate.
In 2013, in the urban periphery of Kathmandu, Haushala Thapa teamed up with her mother Rupa and sister Samanata to create a unique women's cooperative. As the Founder-Director of the local NGO Children and Youth First, running a boarding school for disadvantaged kids and teens, Haushala sought a way to sustainably support the school while providing opportunities for the students' mothers.
My first experience entering the school was overwhelmingly positive. I was greeted by the entire school and it instantly made me feel welcomed into their home. The kids were excited to meet someone new, and I could see it in their enthusiasm.
My host dad came to pick me up. I was tired but more than that I had fun in the snow and learning about business. In the evening, my host mom told me the time will change 1 step back for Daylight Savings.
Within seconds of being on the premises I was promptly given a tika, became drafted into a futsol match, and shown a countless number of really impressive karate moves. After working up a thorough appetite, the didis cooked a delicious dal bhat platter, while I ate through a huge smile.
We are beyond saddened and shocked to share that our dearest friend and supporter Mr Klaus Saurugger passed away this week. Klaus was an unparalleled supporter of Life Vision Academy, and we would not have such an amazing school standing today if it were not for him.
At 8:30 the dance started and our group started dancing. It was fun dancing because back home at LVA we always dance in a group and I felt it the same. I missed my little brothers and sisters, but we had a lot of fun. Everybody made a big circle and I went inside the circle and danced.
My family of 4, myself, my husband Kevin and 2 boys, Zander (18) and Gibby (10) embarked on the most amazing adventure to Nepal, where we visited CYF/LVA. The minute we walked on the campus we were greeting with such love and compassion. I mean, seriously, the kids and staff are the most kind people I have ever met.
The 4th Annual Godawari Running Festival was on September 9th, 2017, and the CYF kids were there to participate! In addition to having a full day of fun, friendly competition, and lots of mud... they managed to secure a 3rd Place finish in the Adult category 5K race, and in the Juniors 2K race!
We're thrilled to announce our senior student Sushmita was given a full scholarship by the North Star Youth Exchange to study abroad in Minnesota for this academic year! We are extremely proud of and excited for her to explore a new part of the world! She flew from Nepal to Minnesota this week and started getting settled in ...
On June 12, 2017, Dhiren Doshi sat down with Channel News Asia to discuss his recent accomplishments in mountaineering and philanthropy. Three weeks earlier, on May 22, Doshi summited Mount Dhaulagiri, making him the first Singaporean to summit the mountain. At 8,167 meters tall, Dhaulagiri is the 7th highest mountain on the planet.
Congratulations to our three oldest students, who all received outstanding marks on their SLC exams! Radha, Rajkumari, and Anil were three of the original 14 students Haushala rescued from an abusive orphanage back in 2009, starting CYF as an organisation to support them through school. The three have now concluded their studies at Life Vision Academy, and these excellent SLC results are an impressive and exciting way for them to complete secondary school.
Trekking through the Himalayas, meditating by sacred lakes, trying new foods and meeting new friends: talk about an adventure! Our Life Vision Academy seniors had the field trip of a lifetime this April. Our 16 oldest students, accompanied by 5 of our staff members, made their way from our campus in Lalitpur to Pokhara, Marpha, Jomsom, Kagbeni and Muktinath!
In April of 2015, Peter Ford was on his way to Mt. Everest. His daughter Skyler turned 14 while he was trekking, and on her birthday, Peter left a t-shirt for her at the last teahouse before Everest Basecamp. Along with the birthday message he wrote on the shirt, he gave Skyler instructions for her to find it when she made her own trip up there one day.