Update: A trek to Makalu and the House of Prosperity in Nepal
Incredible progress made, but some more steps needed to be taken
We are pleased to report that great progress has been made at the Samridhi Ghar (the House of Prosperity/Safe House) that many of you donated to in order to help women in the Makalu region of Nepal that are challenged by domestic abuse. Below is a letter from Deana Zabaldo and Nancy Porten, the foundesr and Directors of Changing Lives Nepal, who along with her amazing staff have been the driving force behind this project its success.
As we soon will be entering the third year of this project we are happy to have the continued support of All The Sky Foundation and a matching fund up to $15,000. With this additional funding and some good news below about resources for a permanent building; we hope that the Safe House will be self-sustaining moving forward into its fourth year of operation. To this end, support from the local government agencies has been positive. Read on about the trek, an update from Deana and help us reach our goal of raising $15,000.
Join the trek and Mountain Madness will match donations up to $1,500 total.
Hope this finds you all well and enjoying the start of spring! We wanted to give you an update on our safe house activities over the last few months. Happy to say that everything is progressing very well! The number of women at Samridhi Ghar ebbs and flows, and right now we are supporting 5 women in need.
The Safe House recently brought in a trainer with 15 years experience at a central government women’s shelter for a 2‑day session with our staff, SODEC board members, and representatives from the local police, hospital, and municipality. She helped our team design and institute a case management system to begin tracking the women for 2 years after they leave our facility and provide them with greater follow-on resources. The training was a success and helped not only create the system but also developed relationships between our staff and all the necessary government officials. In addition, the local government allocated $7500 to be issued in small grants this year to support economic activities for women leaving the SH. These grants will help support our women in generating income by providing startup funds for them to develop a small business in areas like vegetable farming or opening a small sundry shop.
In addition, we are hoping to start construction of a permanent building later this year or early next year! Just a few weeks ago, SODEC secured a land donation from the local Nepali government for a permanent building. Over the past 6 years, SODEC has also worked with a Canadian INGO, Another Brick in Nepal (ABIN), which has successfully built 4 schools in Sankhuwasabha District. ABIN has graciously offered to build and be the primary funder of a permanent safe house building for the women of Nepal- many thanks for this!
All The Sky’s and Mountain Madness’ support in bringing this groundbreaking project into being has been essential! With the start-up grant and the 3‑year commitment of funds that you’ve provided, we’ve been able to prove the concept, establish operations, garner deeper commitment from the local government (including the recent land donation), and now secure a construction commitment from ABIN for a permanent home. We couldn’t have done all this without you!
So grateful for all of the support of your donors and MM in bringing this program to life and looking forward to another successful year!
Deana & Nancy/Changing Lives Nepal”
Photos: Society Development Center
Safe House Project Overview
Samridhi Ghar (House of Prosperity), is a collaborative project between Mountain Madness, Changing Lives Nepal, and All The Sky Foundation to serve the women of Nepal experiencing domestic violence and financial hardship. As a team we have a proven track record of successfully launching charitable programs with strong community support, and Mountain Madness Guide Deana Zabaldo will be bringing decades of regional expertise to establish the project. Our work continues with the local hospital, police, and community, and we are thrilled with the progress thus far. Survivors of domestic violence are also being offered counseling for emotional trauma, support for medical and legal services, and transition support to live independently.
The Safe House also promotes heightened awareness throughout the local communities about women’s rights as well as the underlying causes of violence against women. In alignment with All The Sky’s mission, awareness programs will include reaching men as well as women in order to increase the overall understanding of gender-based violence with the intention of addressing the root causes.
All donations are fully tax-deductible and will be matched up to $15,000 through a generous grant from All The Sky Foundation to ensure this program reaches the start-up goal of $30,000 and launches successfully!
Makalu Fundraiser Trek — 18 days including all travel time!
If you dream of returning to Nepal or visiting for the first time, join us on our fundraising trek to Makalu Base Camp (Nov 4 – 21, 2023), including a visit to the Safe House to see your donation at work if you donated. Donations are not required to join this trek, but encouraged. Trekking in the Makalu Barun National Park will be sure to provide adventure and amazing views of this massive peak, shown here on the left from our Gokyo Lakes Trek.