St Catherine’s in Nepal

As of 2014 St Catherine’s has been supporting Asha Nepal. This local NGO works with young women and children who have suffered from the worst social evils – trafficking into the sex trade, physical and sexual abuse, gender and caste discrimination – as well as those who are at severe risk of abuse or being trafficked. They offer a safe, nurturing home and an education to allow these children to rebuild their lives and re-enter society. Asha Nepal have around 100 children in their care, mostly girls aged 6 to 18 years, plus some boys aged 6 to 11. Asha also support their mothers through its outreach programme.

Asha Nepal’s guiding principle is to empower young women and children to live normal lives in the community – either by supporting them to stay within their families, or to help them reintegrate back into society. The Children’s Transitional Home and The Girls’ Centre are safe homes that provide a stepping stone back to normal life, rather than long-term institutions that depersonalise and create dependency.

All the children and young women in Asha Nepal’s care attend full-time education to at least Year 10, when they can attain their School Leaver’s Certificate (SLC). This is the key to an independent future, and central to combating the worst social crimes of abuse and trafficking.

Education empowers girls to take informed decisions about their lives, to know their rights, to take care of their health, and it leads to employment and self-sufficiency. Education of women can have ripple effects within the family and down generations. It is ultimately the way out of the poverty trap that allows trafficking – with the false lure of a ‘better life’ – to persist.

Next April 2016 World Horizons will be taking another group from St Catherine’s to Nepal to continue their great work with Asha Nepal, as well as trek in the Everest Region and spend a little time visiting the sites of Kathmandu. 

We wish them well.

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