Our new plot of land in Kathmandu No.2 / October 2012 / Issue 32
lea Wyler Dear Friends of ROKPA, Ladies and Gentlemen,
When you read these lines I will be travelling in Tibet – as I do
We are asking you for your email address, as this will enable
for several months each year. Here I met up with our ROKpa
us to communicate with you much more economically in future.
co-founder and president, Dr. akong Tulku Rinpoche. as we do
Thank you so much for your valuable contribution.
every year, we will be visiting our aid projects to make sure that your donations are being put to best use and used in a sustainable way. although our staff is irreproachable, it is useful and necessary to check up on things personally. This enables us to
Vice President of ROKPA INTERNATIONAL
communicate directly with the beneficiaries, motivate our helpers even more, and adjust the support provided by ROKpa if and where needed.
after my visit to Tibet I am planning a detour to Kathmandu,
where I hope to initiate the project ‘extension of the ROKpa Children’s Home and Guest House’. For this reason, our new plot of land in Kathmandu is the main
NEPAL Our new land in Kathmandu
topic of issue 2/2012 of the ROKpa Times. You will learn about
NEPAL | ROKPA SWiTZERLAND
the importance of this piece of land to ROKpa's development. It
Bijay – from street kid to manager
connects the Children’s Home with the Guest House. We are
enthusiasm for our ROKpa Kids
about to take a big step forward and we need your support if we want to stay on firm ground. We have finally purchased the land
i Am ROKPA
– we have been waiting 10 years for this opportunity. almost no
ROKpa KID / Commitment /
land is left for sale in Boudha, even less land is available close to
our Children's Home, and a plot that directly connects the Children’s Home to the Guest House is more than we could have hoped for! This was a unique opportunity which we could not let pass. But now is the time to raise the money to finance this stroke of good luck and for this we need your generous help.
Cover and Back illustration: Santesh and his sister were admitted to the Children's
You might be getting tired of me always asking for donations!
Home at the same time. Before they had
Will it never end? and of course the answer to that question is
been beaten and abused, today they are
no. as long as a single person, a single child, is still suffering on
well fed, happy and going to school.
this earth, does not have enough to eat and has no opportunity for education, I and you will continue as partners - working to make this world just a little better. as a great Tibetan master once said ‘The reason for having is being able to give.’ and we also have about another request for you. I also am enclosing a letter containing a survey on ROKpa. We would like to know what you expect from us. We would like to know in which form you would like to continue receiving the ROKpa Times.
Impressum Text editor: ROKPA Communications Image editors: Corinna Biasutti / Thomas Stettler All photographs and texts: © ROKPA INTERNATIONAL Print run: 8.500 copies Printed on FSC paper
ROKPA INTERNATIONAL has been ZEWO certified since 2004.
Our new land in Kathmandu ROKPA was able to buy 660 square meters of land in the Boudha district. This enables us to combine the Children’s Home with the Guest House, and to improve the infrastructure considerably. Lea Wyler about the new land: “We have been lucky to have been offered the land in Boudha. Here it has become increasingly difficult to acquire property in a central location, let alone one that would combine our two most pivotal projects. But this acquisition was a chance that we could not let pass. The previous owner needed money quickly, in order to buy a larger piece of land elsewhere. He sold us the property at a price which was considerably lower than is customary in this area. We are very happy, because now we can optimize our ROKPA infrastructure, just as we have always wished for. However, if we do not manage to refinance this land quickly with donations, we might have to sell it again, as sad as
ROKPA's main aim: Education
this would be for myself and everybody
The education and professional preparation of children is one of the main aims of the
involved. With the new land we are
ROKPA charity. According to the principle "helping people help themselves" the children
enlarging our most important projects in
are prepared for an independent and self-reliant future. Both the ROKPA Children’s
Nepal and safeguarding them for the
Home and the Guest House play a major role in this fundamental concept.
The acquisition of land and the resulting possibilities for the extension of the two
We will be able to help more people,
houses are of utmost importance for ROKPA.
many more children in a much better way. And last but not least we will generate additional means for our charity.
As soon as the land had been bought, the ROKPA children and adolescents began to tidy up the area with great enthusiasm. Now it is ready for construction. The Swiss ambassador Thomas Gass visited ROKPA, the children gave him a heartfelt welcome.
Our plans for the new land Café-Restaurant
Women's workshop and Shop
We are planning to expand the Café
Connection the Children's Home and the Guest House
into a proper restaurant. It is situated in
Up to now a small path across private
Shop will be extended, more women will
immediate proximity to the famous
ground led from the Children’s Home to
be employed and the range of goods
Boudha Stupa, the visit of which is a
the Guest House. This access can be
must for a Kathmandu tourist. The visitors
denied at any time. In the future, guests
will feel wonderfully comfortable in our
andMONASTRY co-workers can go over our own land
This benefits: women, ROKPA guests,
green oasis. For us there is a double
to the Women's Workshop and the Shop.
benefit: We will increase our revenues,
We hope that through this they will learn
which will flow back into our projects and
more about ROKpa and our local charita-
also will be able to start a training
ble activities. In addition, revenues should
programme in gastronomy for our students,
including cooking, service, buffet and back-office.
Both the Women's Workshop and the
This benefits: The ROKPA children, ROKPA guests, ROKPA workers
R ild OK ren PA ’s Ho
This benefits: ROKPA guests, trainees and tourists.
We will create a permanent distribution center for clothes which we collect and Main Entrance
give out to the needy. For this important task we do not yet have a permanent much simpler.
address. Now the logistics will become Wor ks
The small courtyard of the Children’s
Home is too small for the 55 ROKpa Kids gerous to the little ones. In the future we will provide a playground and sports field for the children.
Playground for the children
and balls flying around are often dan-
This benefits: the needy of Kathmandu
ROKPA Guest House Garden
This benefits: The ROKPA children
problem with financing: The purchase of the property, a unique opportunity for ROKpa, has been funded with donations that are not targeted towards a specific project. This amount is now missing in this years budget and if it cannot be refinanced quickly, ROKpa will be forced to sell the land again. For donations please insert Project Number 5570.
price Increase in Nepal since 2008 Transport school children
ROKPA Childrenâ€™s Home Main Entrance Main Entrance
Kerosine (for Soup Kitchen) + 47% + 38%
This table shows the rather dramatic price development in Nepal, which has also
severely affected ROKpa.
The cost explosion is also reflected in the
prices of land, which have increased dramatically in the densely populated Kathmandu. Our local experts are of the opinion that the acquisition of property happened to comparatively very favourable conditions.
ROKPA Guest House
Nepal | ROKPA Switzerland
Bijay – from street child to ROKPA Children’s Home Manager
Today, Bijay is 30 years old. He is proud to be part of the management of the Children's Home and to still be a member of the ROKPA family. He is looking forward to the new children's playground, made possible through the purchase of the new land.
ROKPA Times: Bijay, when did you first
ROKPA Times: What exactly is your job
meet Mummy Lea in Kathmandu?
in the Children's Home?
Bijay: In 1990, my mother died. My
Bijay: We are three people to manage
father had left us long before that. My
the Children's Home, the Guest House
grandfather threw me out of the house. I
and the Women's Workshop. We
was just 8 years old and was living on the
organize everything that comes up and
streets. At that time, I saw Mummy for
mainly work in the office. Every one of
the first time, in the Soup Kitchen. She
us has a main duty. As far as I am
took children in and I heard that they
concerned, I am mainly responsible for
were able to go to school. That was what
the Children's home.
I wanted too, and after two to three
ROKPA Times: What is the significance
months I was selected. I received 16
of the new plot of land between the
years of education from ROKPA. In 2006,
Children’s Home and the Guest House
I obtained my Bachelor's degree in
Business Administration and found a first job as a bookkeeper. In 2010, I returned to ROKPA und started my job in the Children's Home.
Bijay: The space in front of the Children's Home is limited for the 55 children. There is only a small basketball court. There is not much space to run around, to play, to do sports. With the new plot of land, this is much better. This plot of land is important for our future in Kathmandu.
Enthusiasm for our ROKPA Kids Lea Wyler and "Andreas Vollenweider & the ROKPA Kids" went on tour through Switzer-
The Facebook comment on our tour:
land performing infront of enthusiastic audiences (premiere in Zurich, then Schaffhausen,
„We saw an incredibly moving perfor-
Winterthur, Bern, Stans, Basel, Boswil and Zug). Through a dance theater, the former street children portrayed their difficult childhood that - before joining ROKPA - they had spent in courtyards, in the streets or in garbage dumps - and their blossoming development now, in view of their secure future. Whoever has experienced this knows why donating brings happiness and why donations made to ROKPA really go to where they are most useful.
ROKPA Kids on DVD The premiere in Zurich was filmed and the resulting recording donated to us by the producers. The production of a DVD, however, costs money. Sufficient orders will allow us to order its production and as soon as this is available, you will receive this special edition from us. For CHF 25 plus postage we will send you your copy of the DVD: The DVD would also make for a wonderful Christmas present for those you love! Make sure to place your order for one or several DVD's via the ordering form enclosed or via E-Mail to email@example.com. 6
mance, which almost made me cry. One can hardly imagine that there is so much suffering hidden behind these wonderful and laughing faces."
I aM ROKpa
I am a child of the ROKpa family ... „My parents were alcoholics. One day, I ran away from
I had finally found a home, and I never wanted to go
home because I could no longer bear their quarrels,
back to the streets. I had reached a wonderful place,
and because they were beating me often.
I was given love, food, a roof over my head and an
I was living as a wild child in the streets of Kathman-
education. at the age of 15, I started to write poems.
du and went begging - at least, I never stole anything.
Today, I am 23 years old and I have recently obtained
But early as at the age of seven, I was working as a
a Bachelor's degree in Social Work. I have been on the
dish washer in a hotel. Then I fell seriously ill and
ROKpa tour four times already, and on this tour now,
another street child told me to go to the ROKpa Soup
I have been Mummy's assistant. Now I want to
Kitchen. In 1995, I came into contact with ROKpa for
become a musician. But I also want to give something
the first time. at that time, Mummy lea took care of
back to ROKpa, and work for ROKpa. after all,
me, and from then on, I lived in the Children's Home
ROKpa is my family now, even though I still have my
with all the other children in the big, friendly ROKpa
parents. I don't see them more than once a year.“
family and went to school.
I work for ROKpa... „In the confirmation classes, we discussed practicing
Until March, the adolescents collected money by
acts of charity. I wanted to rouse sympathy for
selling cakes, through sponsored runs, by babysitting
children, who have nothing, and no chance to live in
and playing carneval music. at a festive meeting they
dignity. The confirmands were to express their
were able to hand over a sum of CHF 2500 to
solidarity by an action on their own. The first thing we
ROKpa! There was great joy and happiness! May
did was sell home-made chocolates on a cold and
these young people be a role model for more such
wet market in December, for the benefit of ROKpa.
acts of charity.“
I work for ROKpa... „There was a time, when I did not see much point in
Tibetans. When I was still working, I had only little
my life, my job, my family and my home. at that
time for this additional job, but after my retirement, I
time, lea asked me whether I wanted to take care of
had more time. It has always been my wish to do my
the coordination for a small UK ROKpa organization.
best, and this meant to make full use of my abilities
This was a task that quickly arose my interest. at that
and to learn from others. and it also meant realizing
time, we had only 80 donors, interested in supporting
where my limits are.“ Victoria Long
products made in our Women's Workshop,
Matili style, a former lepra patient, and a
This 2/2012 edition of the ROKpa Times
for yourself or as a present to give away.
friend of lea Wyler, will draw it for you
includes a questionnaire. We kindly ask you to fill it out. Knowing what you expect
We are looking forward to your ideas and
personally. This picture will bring you good
suggestions! please visit our website www.
luck, as he says!
from us enables us to work more efficiently
rokpa.org and click on ROKpa shop.
and also more cost-effective. You can also
Those participating in the questionnaire
use this form to order ROKpa articles such
or placing an order automatically take
as a calendar or the tour DVD, which we
part in a lottery drawing and might win
will start to produce as soon as we have
this textile painting. It will be custom-
enough orders. We can also have textile
made. a wonderful painter of the Nepalese 7
Helping where help is needed: sustainably, for over 30 years.
The bigger boy is Rajendra. Three years ago he was scared and lost – this year he is one of the stars of the ROKPA tour through Europe. The smaller boy is called Santesh, then and today: see cover.
We need your help!
tion SmS dona 9.– HF 9 of up to C
Every single year, many children and youths in Tibet and Nepal – currently
X ROKPA X nly) to o rs e b m u n (amount, 88. 4
almost 10,000 – receive an education thanks to ROKPA. 55 children live in the ROKpa Children’s Home in Kathmandu. In the Workshop
of r donation Example fo 0.–: 2 CHF to 488 Rokpa 20
we offer vocational training to mothers in need: we prepare them for a life of independence, without having to rely on others. We have already achieved a lot with your money and with more donations we will be able to achieve even more. On your behalf! You can make a donation to this account: Credit Suisse: IBaN CH73 0483 5045 5090 1100 1, account 455090-11-1
In Switzerland, donations to ROKPA are exempt from tax. ROKPA has been ZEWO certified since 2004.
Clearing Nummer 4835 postfinance: IBaN CH54 0900 0000 8001 9029 5, account CHF 80-19029-5
phone +41 44 262 68 88
Fax +41 44 26268 89