Next Generation Nepal's "Wisdom Wednesdays"

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Next Generation Nepal's

Wisdom Wednesdays

Why is there a connection between child trafficking and children’s homes?
Why are more than 16,000 children living in children’s homes in Nepal?
How do you know if volunteering is helping or hindering children?
Why are most children living in orphanages not orphans?
What does “giving back” really mean?
What is ethical tourism?

Happening in Kathmandu every Wednesday. Everyone welcome!
Wisdom Wednesdays is an innovative program of talks run by Next Generation Nepal and its partners about ethical volunteering. Our expert speakers work in international development, responsible tourism, child rights, volunteering, and diplomatic missions. What unites them is their passion and commitment to supporting children in Nepal, and their belief that, through being mindful and informed, everyone has the ability to make a positive contribution. Each speaker will share personal stories, interesting anecdotes and engaging insights from their work in Nepal. They will offer tips and advice for travelers, volunteers, tourism professionals and others on how to avoid common pitfalls and scams and make your experiences in Nepal positive and fulfilling.

Location: Paddy Foleys Irish Pub and Restaurant, first floor, opposite Kathmandu Guest House, Thamel, Kathmandu

When: Every Wednesday from March 9 to May 26, 2016 (except for Holi Festival on March 23)

Time: 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Weekly Schedule

March 9: Martin Punaks of Next Generation Nepal will tell the story of how two volunteers—from America and France—stumbled across an illegal child trafficking ring run through Nepali orphanages. Hear about how the volunteers found the children’s families and took them home again.  Learn about how “orphanage trafficking” works in Nepal, why orphanage volunteers may inadvertently be part of the problem, and how instead you can be part of the solution through ethical volunteering and other ways of "giving back.”

March 16: Raj Gyawali from socialtours will talk about NepalNOW, and how Nepal came together after the earthquake. Youth, businesspeople, the army and the police, united by the power of volunteering, worked side by side for relief, recovery and reconstruction. The tourism industry also got together to develop strategies to mobilise volunteers. The talk will also touch on the ethical issues around volunteering, in vetting, matchmaking, and delivery. socialtours is Nepal's only “responsible tourism” company certified by the European standard Travelife.

March 23: None (Holi)

March 30: Simone Galimberti from ENGAGE will talk about inclusive, local volunteering. While there is much debate about what international volunteers can and cannot do in countries like Nepal, Simone will try to tell a different story—the story of the incredible power of local volunteers. With the philosophy that “everybody can serve,” ENGAGE believes that even the most vulnerable person, whom we might think of as only a recipient, can serve his or her community. Local, sustainable volunteering can be a transformative and empowering tool to find local solutions to local problems.

April 6: Anju Pun of Forget Me Not will share the heartfelt story of 20 girls who were living as “paper orphans” for eight years. Through them, Forget Me Not unveiled the child-trafficking business in Nepal that exists purely to promote orphanages. Anju will tell how an Australian charity, upon learning the truth of the orphanage business, won the battle of rescuing all 20 girls and returning their true identities. The children are now thriving, vibrant and connected to family and community. Forget Me Not promotes families and not orphanages, and believes in ethical skilled volunteering.

April 13: Emily Delap from Family for Every Child will put the use of orphanages in Nepal into a global context. She will explore the international evidence on the harm caused by allowing children to grow up away from families, and on the problems of orphanage volunteerism. Drawing widely on the child’s perspective, she will dispel the myth that most children in orphanages need to be there, and that orphanages can replace the love and support of a family. She will also explain what you can do to support children to stay with their families. Emily has 20 years working on child protection issues around the world.  

April 20: Details coming soon - see:
April 27: Susan Dunathan, the Vice Consul of the Embassy of the United States, will talk about her experiences of supporting American tourists in Nepal. Learn about tourist experiences have gone well, and when they have not gone so well, and why. Learn what embassies do for their citizens overseas and how you can make your experience in Nepal safe and rewarding. Susan’s words of wisdom are relevant to all foreign tourists in Nepal wanting to use their time and skills to help others.

May 4: Rensje Teerink, Ambassador and Head of the European Union Delegation in Nepal. Details coming soon.

May 11: Scott Rosefield and others from The Umbrella Foundation will talk to us about the difference between ethical volunteering and the growing trend of “voluntourism.” They will explore how The Umbrella Foundation uses qualified and vetted volunteers to help fight the root causes of trafficking, and give advice on how you too can help—in the right way.

May 18: Kim West of Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) Nepal will tell the story how one of the world’s most well-respected volunteering organizations was established, and how its guiding principles can be helpful for all volunteers wishing to support Nepal.  Kim will also talk about her own personal experiences of working with volunteers: of what works well, and what doesn’t. This is a rare opportunity to learn from one of Nepal’s leading experts in voluntary service.

May 25: The Grand Finale – Details coming soon - see:

For up to date information see:

Position: Country Director, Next Generation Nepal

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The idea is simple: creating an open “Portal” where engaged and committed citizens who feel to share their ideas and offer their opinions on development related issues have the opportunity to do...


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