Our indefatigable Program Manager, Shiri, wrote us this email last month, updating us about the current progress of our fellows pursuing a Bachelor’s degree. His passion and his commitment shone through this update he provided us, so we wanted to share this email as a way to let you know about the current progress of our fellows!

Shirijung Hang Rai, Program Manager

It is a great pleasure to write to you about the transformational journey of our fellows in Bachelors. I have been observing quite recently how independent and self-driven our fellows have become which is in itself a very powerful and inspiring journey.

Sarita providing after school program at Sunsar Maya

I never get tired talking about Sarita Purkoti. Coming from a very humble background and winning over numerous odds and ends, Sarita is slowly finding the stability in her life. After being offered a full time job at Sunsar Maya, Sarita has not only been able to support to her family but gradually becoming financially independent. I still remember how she fancied the dreams of going to Japan or Australia (God knows how) but now her life has a different trajectory.

(Utsab during his workshop on First Aid)

I remember how soft spoken and nervous Utsab once used to be. He has completely transformed since. Other fellows call him ‘Thul Dai’ (elder brother) and Utsab has lived almost every expectation one can have from a Thul Dai. He mentors them, cares for them but never gets angry at anyone – that’s just being Utsab. He has earned so much of respect from the fellows. He has now received a job at Shree MahaKaruna Kasyap School. It is internationally funded school registered in Mustang. During winter the students come to Kathmandu, where they have their own big facility at Bouddha. Altogether they have 70+ students and more than 20 staffs, all living in the same big building(s). His role is a Maths teacher teaching from grade 2-8 and part of his job requires him to work 6 months in Bauddha, 3 months in Upper Mustang. He has been offered a nice salary, accommodation, and logistics will be taken care by them. This means, our Thul Dai might be leaving us soon.

(Manisha presenting in a STEM: Girls in Action, Workshop)

Manisha Deshar. When she was provided the offer for Bachelors support, I still remember how nervous she was. We were almost dropping her. When first semester of Bsc. CSIT came to an end, she freaked out as her results were poor. She was as working as an intern at that time. She left her work and told me that she won’t be working up until 3-4 semester. She wants to prioritize her study, be stable and then think of getting a job. Now she is in her 3rd semester, studying absolutely fine. Few days ago there was an internship opportunity and I thought Manisha would be great fit. I told her about it, but she politely refused it. Her reason was the same. She still wants to prioritize her study and then only think of work. Now I am comparing past Manisha with the present one. She has a choice now, whether to study or/and work. This ‘choice’ she has now is a very strong indicator of how our fellows are becoming independent. Having a choice in life is such a great feeling to have. In the meantime, she searched and participated in many workshops on digital literacy, programming and coding. She says she wants to learn those as it matches with her course and later pursue the career in same. Her actions subtly tells me how clearly she has been able to think now. I am stunned by her clarity of thoughts, ability to prioritize, self-learning and so proud of it.

Dipesh is very artist as well.

Dipesh is giving tuitions, He earns a small salary, which he uses to support his little sister’s education. He recently got an ATM debit card and flaunts proudly. You should see the look on his face. He also loans as much as 500, 1000 to other fellows. He was tired of doing so because every time he had to go to the nearest ATM lounge to get cash. Therefore, he has kept a small piggy bank in his room. He keeps there some cash and fellows can take small amount whenever they want it. Everyone knows his story right? Looking at his past and how he has turned out to be is truly transformational.

(Suraj receiving Token of love after joining as a Panelist in USEF event)

Suraj has been offered a job at Aatmiya, an NGO working in the field of health, economic development and Women empowerment. They have a community hospital at Sindhuli. Shrima (who worked with us last year) is also working as their staff. Suraj, recently completed his internship from Norvic, is a college topper and now has a great opportunity to take off his career. I remember how troubled Suraj was during his college due to his English language and what a struggle was it for him to get an admission for BPH. Now, Suraj has become such an inspiration for his co-fellows and juniors.

Kumar participating in Goal Setting workshop

Kumar BK. I was so worried about him when he first joined us. I vividly remember how his father gravely asked us to take care of him, as Kumar did not know even how to cross the road. That Kumar who was so shy and afraid at times, now has transformed into a brave, clever young kid. If junior fellows have to go somewhere, they seek Kumar’s assistance. Kumar gladly takes them to so many places in Kathmandu. Couple of days back, one of the fellow had to be taken to hospital. He wanted to go with Kumar and Kumar knew this hospital so well. He knew where it was, who is the doctor even his specialty, how to reach there. I was so impressed. How fast things change, in Kumar’s case just 2 years.

There’s so much to write about all of our fellows. Happiness is such a small word to express my feelings at the moment. I am so proud of them, all of them. I am deeply grateful to have this amazing opportunity to work with and for fellows who have unbending intention of giving the best shape to their future and being with this magnificent mission of Samaanta Foundation to see such outcomes is surreal. This is not just a change, I think ‘change’ devalues the whole sentiment. It’s a transformation. That’s what it is. Gosh!