INF DIASPORA INITIATIVE
Diaspora Digest N O. 9
M AY . 2012 NORTH WEST INDIA
N EW W ORKERS FOR THE N EPALI D IASPORA F OR IMI (INF) IN NW I NDIA
F OR MLI (INF) IN K ATHMANDU
F OR N E MUN IN K ATHMANDU
Cheap & easy travel No visas needed No agents
JANAK BC (pictured here with his new wife, Thiru) has been appointed to work with the INF India Migrant Initiative in Delhi & NW India. A recent MDiv graduate from UBS, Pune, Janak first went to India as a migrant himself and has lived and worked there for many years. Janak will be based in Nepalgunj but working with Alois von Flüe in Delhi. They will both travel to the IMI projects in Delhi and the NW of India—Shimla, Dehradun & Kotdwar. If you have any Diaspora News we could include in Diaspora Digest please let us know.
HEIKE PRIEBE spent the last 5 years being a ’didi’ (friendly big sister) to many young migrants in Malaysia— while also obtaining a degree in Biotech. She has now returned to Nepal and will be working with the INF Migrant Link Initiative, based in Kathmandu. Heike will also promote NeMUN in Nepali churches and maintain her links in Malaysia.
SAMJHANA BK is now a full-time NeMUN staff member. She is organising the office and this extra input should also help to extend the network around the world. If you know of others working in the Diaspora, whom we could feature, please let us know.
Ladies who go to work in ‘Arab’, especially in Saudi and Kuwait, are known to be at the greatest risk of abuse and other problems. We thank God that we were able to help MAYA return home and to encourage BINA before she managed to get back to Nepal. Both are now happily reunited with their families.
Men travelling on their own Robbery at the border HIV reaching remote villages
Working wives & mothers Children not going to school I NSIDE
THIS ISSUE :
N EW W ORKERS FOR T HE N EPALI D IASPORA: J ANAK H EIKE S AMJHANA
A NSWERS TO P RAYER
N ORTH W EST I NDIA
IMI N ETWORKING
P RAISE FROM IMI
P RAYER FOR IMI U RGENT P RAYER P OINTS
N E MUN M EMBERSHIP
W HAT THE B IBLE SAYS
V ISITING R ETURNEES
U PCOMING E VENT — N E MUN IN K ATHMANDU
News—Ministry in UAE
P AGE 2
D IASPORA D IGEST
N ORTH W EST I NDIA
After HM King Prithvi Narayan Shah unified Nepal, starting in 1768/9 in the Kathmandu Valley, he set out to expand his new kingdom of Nepal eastwards and westwards. By the end of the 18th century, therefore, Nepal had spread from its present day border westwards, through Kumaon and Gadhwal almost as far as Shrinagar (Kashmir). However, Nepal only held on to these territorial gains for a few years before losing them in 1816 as a result of the AngloNepali war. Nowadays this territory is part of 2 Indian states – Uttarkhand (formerly the northern part of Uttar Pradesh) and Himachal Pradesh. Nestling under the western end of the Himalayas, the whole area – with its ‘hills and valleys’ is very similar geographically to Nepal. It is therefore no surprise then that migrants from the Mid and Far West Regions of Nepal, especially those from Mugu, choose to go to this area.
Nowadays, in NW India, Nepalis are no longer the brave conquerors: many are poor economic migrants. The open border from Nepal to India, means they can cross easily without the need to pay agents to help them get visas and work contracts. This is the cheapest option for migration. Such migrants usually end up as porters or agricultural labourers, earning minimal wages, but this is still better than staying at home in a grain shortage area. Many of them are seasonal migrants who return home annually to plant and harvest their own small fields. Single men (i.e. single or without their families) have special problems. They may fall into sexual temptations and this is one reason why HIV is rapidly becoming a major problem in remote districts of Nepal. Also, as they return over the border, bringing home their meagre Indian earnings, all too often unscrupulous men take advantage of them. They pretend to befriend them and offer them food or drink. Then, when the migrants fall unconscious, they rob them and leave them destitute by the side of the road. Others – especially those who venture further afield to cities like Delhi – may take their families with them and although this alleviates some of the problems it causes others, especially if they have small or school-age children. Usually both parents need to work to make ends meet. The children are often denied schooling for financial or other logistical reasons, and if they do get admission, they may struggle because they have to use Hindi (not Nepali).
N O. 9
P AGE 3
IMI N ETWORKING (I NDIA M IGRANT I NITIATIVE )
U RGENT P RAYER P OINTS BHAKTA has been in jail in Saudi for 2 yrs simply because he was in the area when a murder was committed. All we can do is phone him and pray. SUKMAN is still lost in Malaysia although we have just heard he may have been located – keep praying. JHABI LAL suffered an injury to his back in Malaysia and was invalided home. Just as he started to recover his 16yr old wife committed suicide.
Representatives from all parts of IMI plus the INF Acting Director & Diaspora Coordinator (from Kathmandu) and one of the INF/Nepal Safe Migration staff (from Nepalgunj) met together for an IMI networking meeting at the Navinta centre in Delhi, 8-9th Feb, 2012. Everyone had an opportunity to present their own specific migrant work—within India or Nepal. Everyone agreed this was a great meeting, with great inspiration and that it should be repeated regularly. Next year in Shimla!
KRISHNA also had a serious accident in Malaysia. He was sent back to Nepal as a quadriplegic. He is in hospital in Kathmandu.
“I have a small request to you that... I am going to take a bible club in centre and we are going to make salvation bracelet in craft. According to color I will describe them God's love for them. I think this is the best time to teach them about God's love and care for them. Please pray.” (Email from Dehradun)
Y OUNGEST N E MUN M EMBER !
“I want to let you know that all PP (Prayas & Prerna) kids passed in their exam from Jakhan center. We Praise God for that!” (Email from Dehradun about the Children’s Tuition Centre)
N E MUN M EMBERSHIP The benefits are: Regular Diaspora prayer bulletins. 2 nights free stay in Mitra Niwas.
Responsibilities are: Prayer support. Subscriptions.
Why not complete and cut out the membership form and join our network?
Congratulations to Sapana & Franklin on the birth of their new baby daughter. Janelle comes to most of the NeMUN meetings— with mum of course!.
V ISITING R ETURNEES
W HAT THE B IBLE SAYS ...
“Where can I find fellowship?” “How can I join NeMUN?” is the repeated cry of migrant returnees. They are also asking, “What next?” Their time overseas has changed them. Nepal also is changing. Should they return to the Diaspora? Should they try to settle back in Nepal? And if so, what should they do? Some opt for Bible training. Some try to start small churches. Others are struggling to set up their own businesses. It’s not so easy to give them the answers, but one of the best ways of encouraging them is to visit them in their villages back in Nepal. However, while the country is heavily dependent on the remittances sent back by these migrants, at the moment (in the run up to the promulgation of a new Constitution) Nepal is beset by a series of bandhs (strikes / closures). These make visiting – even in the Kathmandu Valley – rather more than a simple challenge. Some folks had planned to visit contacts in Nepalgunj (in the Mid Western Terai) but with closed roads and no buses running, these plans are still on hold. Other very enterprising folks managed to make visits in the east of Nepal – by commandeering an ambulance and finding friends with motorcycles.
In the early church, the believers who scattered because of trouble and persecution took the gospel with them. (Acts 8:4) In other words, it was the Diaspora people who scattered the seed of the Word throughout the Roman Empire. What an example to follow!
Returnees from Malaysia (& one Pastor’s son) in Jorpati, Kathmandu
NeMUN: Staff Worker—Samjhana BK Board Chair—Sapana Basyal EPC 2028, PO Box 8975 Satdobato, Lalitpur, NEPAL Phone: +977-1-55-26913 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Mitra Niwas: Host / Hostess—Devendra & Ram Maya Joshi Satdobato Chowk, Lalitpur Phone: +977-1-55-26913 Mobile: 9841 026 339 or9803 424 011 Email: email@example.com
“Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word.” U PCOMING E VENT —N EMUN P ROMOTION M EETING IN K ATHMANDU
Thursday 2 August 2012 If you live in or near Kathmandu, please book this date in your diary. If you live anywhere else, please remember this meeting in your prayers.
N EWS —M INISTRY
For 3 weeks, from 17th May 2012, Bal Kumari will be visiting Emirates and teaching Bible Survey to Nepali migrants. We hope NeMUN will soon be on the Web
INF A Christian Mission Serving the physical and spiritual needs of Nepali people INF DIASPORA INITIATIVE International Service Office PO Box 1230 Kathmandu NEPAL Phone: 00977-1-55-21183 Fax: 00977-1-55-26928 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org