We conducted 28 community events for elderly citizens who are looking for a social engagement but haven't found that space and opportunity. So we designed Hamarapalama as their way to be social and have conversations on topics of their interests. Most of the topics were of historical and cultural nature, that they referred to as "Satsang". A speaker would speak on a certain topic and the audience could also give their viewpoint on the topic. We would especially like to thank "Maheshwor juju Rajopadhya" for being such a wonderful speaker of the event. We also like to thank Bishnu Pandey, Ishor Raj Lohani, Ram Krishna Tamrakar, Kamal Nath Mishra for the continuous participation.
Awakin Circle is the creation of a time and space where we can step out of our daily activities to meditate and engage in a circle of reflective sharing. Every week on Thursday, we come together to sit in silence, share some personal insights and some hugs and tea afterwards.
A palpable sense of gratitude and community weaves through it all. The ripples of inner transformation are countless -- and continue on.
"...the research evidence keeps piling up, and it points strongly to the conclusion that a high degree of empathy in a relationship is possibly the most potent and certainly one of the most potent factors in bringing about change and learning." Carl Rogers
An empathy circle is a space to explore on the theme of empathy. The objective of this circle is to cultivate a culture of empathy within the community. It tends to nurture and deepen empathy with ourselves and others. Deeper empathy has many benefits Such as:-
Experiencing moments of connection, disconnection and self realization Kehi Garoun held the 6th “Mindfulness” Retreat in Boudha,Kathmandu this weekend. The theme of the retreat was to explore the potential of the change that ripples from self to into the world which was so visible among 24 participants, the space and people around. There were 4 adorable kids as well, who made the retreat more play full and alive. We used the tools of mindfulness and interaction which somehow made an impact to every individual. The desire of the change from within which would ripple out through relationships and to the world seems possible now after having this retreat done. And there is more hope that things would fall in place and the world would be a better place, as we start to see ourselves and others as humans.
The last breathers was held successfully with 12 people in KG office. The whole session revolved around a simple question, "Who is sad?", where everyone was engaging equally. It is a regular session running every Friday morning from 7:30 to 9:00 am. One and half hour long this session included breathing exercise and sharing on the given topic. Everyone enjoyed to be the part of this session. Members of breathers believe that this kind of session is needed to everyone out there.
After a Breathers session at Budhanilkantha, KG team members started a silent hike uphill towards Gairigaun, Muhanpokhari located near the boundaries of Shivpuri National Park. The team stayed at a members place in the locality which was abundant in nature.
The three day trip explored themes of facilitator development sessions and mindful sessions.
Facilitator Development Sessions
Sessions included discussion on notions of:
Mindful Sessions: Indoor/Outdoor
Kehi Garoun has been working for the last ten years towards self-empowerment. Yet, somehow we are seen as yet another charity organization, adding to the very culture of dependence that we are trying to change. In our attempt to rethink our work, Nabin, Pravendra and Umanga attended a 3 day retreat on Reimaging Education in Ahmedabad, organized by movedbylove.org. The retreat was an experience of generosity, connection and learning. It was truly rewarding experience for our 'hands, hearts and heads.' Details of the retreat is here.
Inspired by our experience, we replicated a similar retreat for Kehi Garoun volunteers from January 27-29 to explore the potential of "inside-out change" - the social change that results from personal change. We did not have a rigid agenda, yet we had a prayer that each of us will get some clarity for oneself, and kindle heart-connections with others.
"EACH OF US GUARDS A GATE OF CHANGE,
THAT CAN BE UNLOCKED ONLY FROM THE INSIDE."
The retreat, thanks too all participants and volunteers, happened to emerge with a framework of how we can co-create possibilities of Inside-Out Change at the level of schools and colleges. There were many moments of inspiration and connections. Our first evening was rainy and cold but was made peaceful and warm by the volunteers who sat around, in the distant glow of a heater, to share their stories of inner change. Saturday was a busy day of breakout sessions and prayers and laughter. Many of us left at the end of the day with a piece of an inner sun shine. Sunday morning, a small group took a long walk through the flower-fields to Ichangu temple before saying goodbye to the inspiring location of Whitefield Residential School.
We believe that the retreat was meaningful for each of the participants. For Kehi Garoun, the retreat was a collective articulation of the model of change it has been exploring. We were reminded of how joyful yet difficult is the journey of self-care, social-empathy and humility. And in that spirit, we share this email with you to highlight:
The experience was so inspiring that Kehi
Garoun held a similar retreat on inside-out
change as soon as their team got back to Nepal.
The retreat started with simple introduction of all the participants and the volunteers. All shared their moments of joy in education. There were break out sessions on compassion quotient. We visited Sewa Cafe, an experiment in giving, and listened to Nemo's songs.
Annex: Kehi Garoun team stayed for an extra day to visit some interesting works in education. Our visit to the Riverside International School led us to integrate their "design for change" curriculum into our own Dignity Circle program. and also the "i can " challenge for the schools. We also heard about their salient lessons from Gandhian education from the Registrar of Ganghi Vidyapith.
We moderate dialogues among leaders of various organizations who wish to serve as a sounding board to one another.
For more pictures, click here.
Kehi Garoun is itself inspired by J. Krishnamurti, and proudly displayed J.K publications in the 19th Nepal International Book Fair at Bhrikutimandap, Exhibition hall, Kathmandu where more than 50 books and DVDs were displayed.
The book fair was held from 21st August to 29th August.
In 2011, we held 100+ events towards ‘responsible citizenship
+ accountable leadership’.
In 2012, we carry a voice that says ‘बाँच र बाँच्न देऊ’
June 2012: "बाँच र बाँच्न देऊ" - Kathmandu Cares For the Whole of Nepal
Challenge: Kathmandu is insensitive to plights of the rest of the nation; Only when Kathmandu suffers long bandhs do people here agitate.
Response: We learn to care about what's happening outside Nepal. We will support 'No-bandh' long as there is a bandh anywhere in Nepal.
What we do? Every Friday 6pm Thamel - Show that we care for that people all over Nepal are free. Stand for 15 minutes for Nepali everywhere.
May 2012: "बाँच र बाँच्न देऊ" - No to Ethnic Politics, No to Bandha
Challenge: Politician's ethnic-politics is turning neighbors-against-neighbors.
Response: Be Human - prove to yourself that your humanity is bigger than your ethnicity!
We may not change politicians but we can reassure the silent mass that not 'all' newars, limbus, tharus etc. want ethnic nationalism.Wiki - "An ethnic conflict or ethnic war is a conflict between ethnic groups often as a result of ethnic nationalism. They are of interest because of the apparent prevalence since the Cold War and because they frequently result in war crimes such as genocide."
What we do? Silent Rally - 10 am Thamel - Show that our silence is not your approval of ethnic-agenda.
Walk for "individual freedom and communal harmony", whichever ethnicity calls for bandh, people from same ethnicity come and rally against that. We can make this a citizen's habit.
2011: Responsible Citizens + Accountable Politics
Problem: Politicians have time and again pushed constitution deadline; we citizens seem to give them license to do just that. Unless we care for accountability, why would the politicians?
Response: We should become responsible citizens and contest better political alternatives.
What we did: We stood in silence for 15 minutes, promoting a simple message: "It is our responsibility as citizens to bring accountability from politicians." We did that over 100 times (daily for 3 months, and weekly for 3 months) at Durbar Marg. It was organized under the theme of मेरो देश, मेरै दायित्व! (Mero Des, Merai Dayitwa) in partnership with Nepal Unites.
“Teaching effectively” is a Teachers' Workshop on Learner-Centric-Education. The Principal of John Dewey HS School is the facilitator and designer of the workshop. The workshop is held at Kanya Mandir H.S School for 2 and half hours every Sunday from 16th Nov- 7th Dec 2014. The training redefines the responsibilities of a teacher to promote student-centered teaching. 26 teachers from secondary level of Government Schools are paying to attend this program. Click for pictures
The participated schools and teachers were as follows:
To make Kehi Garoun an environment where people can grow and develop, Kavita Srinivasan guide the staff and interns on presentation skills. After an initial session where insights on presentation skills and tools were shared, participants scheduled their own presentations in the following week. Each presentation is followed by a feedback session to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each presenter, and what they can do to improve their presentations skills.
Kehi Garoun team looks to improve purposefulness and productivity of individuals. “The One Thing” is the title of a book written by Gary Keller, towards that end. Kehi Garoun team read this book, followed by a gathering on 21st June 2013, to discuss its implications in each of their lives.
The book dismisses many commonly held beliefs about success, such as the benefits of multitasking and discipline. It’s primary take away is the question: “What is the ONE THING I can do, such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?”
The staff discussed how the principles in this book applied to them personally and professionally. This was done in the beautiful environs of the Tea Lounge, which is a standing example of a place which could as well have been designed keeping the principles of THE ONE THING in mind!
"Kehi Garoun Aafno Health ko Lagi" is a CSR campaign with K Lab.
It is a micro-social-venture whereby KG and volunteers can earn some profit that can be directed to social causes. KG has placed a machine that measures BMI (Body Mass Index) which helps individual to be responsible for their own Health.
On 6th April 2013, the BMI machine initiative was launched at the Bhatbhateni Supermarket, Baluwatar. With the help of KG Circle, Jayshree Jain and Bhatbhateni’s owner Mr. Min Bahadur Gurung, we were able to get the space at Bhatbhateni free of cost for 15 days. This period of 15 days has been extended and the initiative is continuing a good pace. With the efforts of KG staff Krishna Raj Tiwari, and the volunteers (Pawani Khadka, Nikita Bajrachaya, Yumi, Sagma, Ankit Acharya, Apekchya Khanal, Gyurme Thangyon, Jayshree Jain, Karishma Tuladhar, Karma Dongol Gurung, Pratyush Shah, Sabina Adhikari, Tashi, Nabin Sharma, Raiju), the BMI project is sustaining and yielding great results. From the Rs. 100 fee per person for the BMI test, 50% of the amount will go to the KG Gifts Program for stationery.
The profit from the venture will go to support the stationery drive.
Any queries may be forwarded to the venture coordinator Krishna Tiwari.
"Relationship is the only thing that we have, and without understanding that relationship we can never find out what reality is or God is. So, to bring about a complete change in the social structure, in society, the individual must cleanse his relationship, and the cleansing of relationship is the beginning of his own transformation." JK
Full update page is here.
Sophiya lives with her aunt. She has a poor economic background. She comes with bare feet in school and doesn't have proper uniform to wear. In a week, she used to be present only for 2-3 days. And according to her teacher, Ms. Bimala Acharya, she covered her face due to shyness.
Through KG Gifts, she has been given sweater on the cold winter, supported by Siddhartha Maharjan. She has been encouraged to come to school, says her teacher in an excited tone. Nowadays, she is regular to school and studies with the whole heart. She stands first/second in her class. Now that she has received a KG gift, she says she wants to study hard and doesn't want to put any burden to her aunt.
Ms. Bimala says she has been exhilarated and happy to see Sophiya improving and being a confident girl. Ms. Bimala is also praised by the school's principle. With KG Gifts, she really feels empowered to do something for their students
Clothes Drive was held at Kanya Mandir Premises for the students of 30 government schools, on 5th
January,2013. We had collected over 600 washed and used clothing items.
On the warm sunny winter, the clothes fair started with the big bang. The students received clothes by dancing on " Gangnam Style" and playing games like Pin The Donkey, Solving Puzzle, Mathematics Questions, Hit The Can, London Stop, Chungi, Score A Basket. More than 180 students received clothes to keep themselves warm in this winter.
Bimala Shahi (class 6, Arunodaya School, Dhoka Tole), as per her teacher, Anju Subedi, is a disciplined and understanding student. She is thorough with her studies and personal hygiene. She likes to keep the the school clean, and even helps the janitor in cleaning the toilets. One of the remarkable things about Bimala, is that she has an exceptional skill in debate. She provides feed-backs and suggestion to her teachers; a quality found rare in the child of her age.
Nishan Rai is studying in class 4 in Shanti Shishya Mandir School(Dhalko). Nishan is a very active student. He is dedicated in his studies. He helps his friends in their assignments.He was recommended by his teacher, Ms. Neema Rajbhandari.
Ms. Rajbhandari says that Nishan shares his stationeries with his friends. Beside this, Nishan is also very obedient and a regular student.
This reward was sponsored by Mrs. Sunita Pradhan Memorial Fund.
Our team of volunteers are currently working to locate the students and their families, and understand their needs. We will provide relief to the students and the families as needed.
In our blog, you can read updates of activities conducted by our enabling team.