"Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education."

News

On Wednesday 6th January 2011

On Wednesday 6th January 2011 Hari Bhandary from Clinic Nepal presented to a group of EMT students at SOLO Southeast school for wilderness medicine based out of the Nantahala Outdoor Center in North Carolina. The stude nts traveled from as far away as Alaska to participate in a month long intensive medical training class. Many of the students already work as vol unteers for overseas medical projects and have plans to help Hari in the future. SOLO Southeast and NOC are actively involved in medical training throughout the World. In 2010 two expeditions traveled to Belize to build a community health post and train village healthcare workers. NOC plans to send medical students and volunteers to Hari's clinic in February 2012 to help with patient care and construction projects.

Free Health Camp in Madi-Area

5 Tage medizinische Versorgung auf eine andere Art und Weise

Eine medizinische Versorgung in einer so abgelegenen Region wie der Madi-Area, suedlich des Chitwan Nationalparks an der Grenze zwischen Nepal und Indien, zu gewaehrleisten ist quasi unmoeglich. Deshalb werden von der “Friendship Clinic Nepal” regelmaessig Health Camps organisiert, um den Menschen in diesen Regionen ueberhaupt eine Basisversorgung zu ermoeglichen.

So auch vom 28. Februar 2011 bis zum 04. Maerz 2011. Mit einem Team aus 17 Teilnehmern (u.a. Hari Bhandary, 2 nepalesischen Aerzte, 2 Pharmazeuten, 1 Krankenschwester, 7 jungen spanischen Aerzte und 2 deutschen Medizinstudenten) sind wir nach Laugai gefahren, um von dort aus an 5 verschiedenen Orten der Region (V.D.C. Gardi) kostenfreie Health Camps durchzufuehren.

Fuer uns als Studenten war das sehr spannend. Einerseits in kurzer Zeit so viele Krankheiten zu sehen, Krankheiten, die bei uns in Deutschland teilweise nur noch sehr selten zu sehen sind und andererseits betrachten zu koennen, wie Medizin auch funktionieren kann. Fernab von teurer Diagnostik oder modernster Technologie wird hier noch mit ausfuehrlicher Anamnese und gruendlicher Untersuchung der Weg zur Diagnose gefunden.

Die meisten Krankheitsbilder lagen im Bereich des Gastrointestinaltraktes (Diarrhoe, Gastritis), der Gynaekologie (PID), der Dermatologie (Tinea) und muskulo-skeletaler Schmerzen, aber immer wieder hatten wir die Moeglichkeit, Krankheiten wie Scabies, Windpocken oder auch Helmenthiasis diagnostizieren zu koennen.

Aber nicht nur die medizinische Versorgung spielt bei den Health Camps eine Rolle. Viele Patienten nutzen die Moeglichkeit, um kostenlos mit Medikamenten versorgt zu werden.

Dr. Suraj Lamichona, Kristel Mills und Maryam Abdelkarim behandeln gemeinsam einen Patienten

In gravierenden Faellen, wie OP-Indikationen oder Verdacht auf Malignome wurde eine weitere Versorgung angeleitet. So wurden beispielsweise mehrere Uterus-Prolapse oder eine Hydrozele mit der Ambulanz in ein groesseres Krankenhaus nach Bahratpur gebracht, beziehungsweise bei Verdacht auf boesartige Erkrankungen die Verbindung zum naechstgelegenen Zentrum fuer Krebserkrankungen hergestellt.

Allein durch dieses Health Camp wurde insgesamt rund 1100 Patienten geholfen, 2 Wochen zuvor wurden bereits im Nachbardistrikt V.D.C. Ayodhyapuri rund 900 Patienten versorgt, in 2 Wochen wird das dritte Health Camp in Madi diesen Jahres stattfinden.

Wirklich spannend und schoen bei diesem Health Camp dabeigewesen zu sein. Es hat viel Spass gemacht mit den freundlichen und lieben Menschen in dieser Region in Kontakt zu treten und mit diesem tollen Team der Clinic Nepal zusammen zu arbeiten.

Vielen lieben Dank dafuer.

What Can One Person Achieve?

    Personal history and background to medical projects in Nepal:
  • I was born in Madi area south of Kathmandu on March 8, 1970, and grew up in the remote village of Meghauli, Nepal, where about 99% of Nepali population lives by subsistence farming.
  • Access to education was difficult, and although I was able to attend school my parents had to pay fees for the education that was of an extremely low standard. 
  • Health care was practically non-existent aside from local traditional medicine practitioners using herbal medicine. 
  • As I grew older I became increasingly frustrated with the state of both the health care and of the educational system that were surrounding me. 
  • At the age of 17, I finished education, left home, and went to work in the city. It was difficult to find work but a friend helped me to get a job as the bartender on a hydroelectric project. 
  • Once I saved enough money, in 1989 I returned to my village, Meghauli, where I directed and participated in the construction of a guest house made of local building materials, accommodating 8 to 10 people. In addition, in my spare time I taught and tutored children of which many belonged to the under priviledged groups in the village.
  • In 1991 I was sponsoring university students and I already had in my mind to also go to the capital to enroll at the university in medical studies; then, one night I found a few German and Nepali people taking shelter in the guest house. They were traveling Nepal helping to improve the lives of people with Leprosy, disabilities and living in poverty. I joined the team and was given training as a health worker. Disagreements among the group of trainers led me, together with a group of friends, to leave with the purpose of creating a health clinic and rehabilitation centre in Kathmandu. This project evolved into the establishing of an addition to the existing hospital and this addition was officially inaugurated on 22nd of July 1992.
  • Now earning money, I continued to personally sponsor students, and teachers in my village/district. Over time, I have been in a position to sponsor more and more children and teachers. I now sponsor over 100 students (20 of whom have graduated and are working as junior electrical engineer, nurses, teachers, etc.) and the three teachers one for each of 3 rural schools. 
  • In 1996 I returned to Meghauli with the vision of opening a medical clinic. I sought support from my family, local people, as well as from individuals and organisations over-seas and little by little the project came into existence. By then I had also sold all personal possessions that had some value to add to the financial capital. My parents’ permission to sell a piece of land to build the medical clinic was essential. I said to my father that I would first try to raise the money and if I did not succeed, we would then sell the land. Money was raised successfully to cover construction cost. At the same time, I wrote about a hundred letters to various potential donors describing my vision. One of them a British whom I had helped when he was lost in Nepal, responded raising money from his family and from others in the UK. Most of the money to built the clinic came from these donors. However, to cover travel, transportation, communication expenses as well as food, the land was sold at a later date. 
  • In 1997 ‘Clinic Nepal’ was finally established, with many sub-projects quickly developing from this time on, in the following fields pertaining to health, education, clean water.

Clinic Nepal's Successful Story

Wooden Animals!

clinic nepal
Tara BK is now 24 and running a successful wholesale business carving and selling beautiful wooden animals to tourist outlets in Kathmandu. Born to the son of a poor wood carver, Tara learned his craft initially from his father, who still carves animals for the tourists visiting Megauli. Since the family was very poor, Clinic Nepal sponsored four of the children to attend school. After completing school, Tara expressed an interest in attending an art school in the capital city. Clinic Nepal again helped to sponsor this and today Tara and his thriving business has improved the living standard of his father and siblings. 

From Cook to Restaurant Owner – from School Boy to Supervisor

Mr. Darai is known throughout Meghauli for his amazing skill in cooking. He learned to cook when he was a young boy working in hotels in Chitwan. Although very poor, Mr Darai followed the traditional belief that the more children you have the more prosperous you will be and has eleven children! Falling prey to difficult economic times with so many mouths to feed, Clinic Nepal met Mr. Darai when he was unemployed and the family facing hard times. Clinic Nepal gave Mr. Darai a job as a cook in its own guest house and also sponsored his children to attend school. After completing his basic education, the oldest son, Purna, decided to study engineering at a college in Bharatpur, again sponsored by Clinic Nepal. In 2004, he finished the two year course qualifying him as a building supervisor and easily found work in Kathmandu. Since then, work has been plentiful, moving from two or three building companies throughout Nepal. Purna now supports two of his siblings through school and provided the financial support for his father to reach his dream and open a restaurant of his own. Despite his new restaurant, Mr. Darai still helps when his cooking skills are required for special occasions at Clinic Nepal! 

Rebellion Can Work!

Vishnu Rijal, a bright and talented girl graduated from school with very high marks, and wanted to go on to become a nurse. However her father did not agree as he holds the still widely thought belief that woman should only work in the home. Vishnu, being rebellious, went ahead and applied to the government nursing school in Bharatpur, a highly competitive programme. When she learned of her acceptance she eagerly asked her father to pay, but he declined. Ram Bhandary, Program Director of Clinic Nepal heard the local gossip of Vishnu’s predicament. Ram spoke to Vishnu and saw the amazing potential that she possessed. Clinic Nepal was able to sponsor her to attend the nursing programme. Following her graduation she applied again for a very competitive government nursing position and again her dream was fulfilled. Today her brothers and sisters visit the Clinic to show their support and gratitude for the opportunity it provided to their sister.

Keeping it in the Family

In 1997, Hari was visiting the land that he planned to build on Clinic Nepal on when he met Mr Aryal who was ill with tuberculosis. As the Clinic grew, Hari kept bumping into that gentleman and decided to give him job as groundskeeper so that he could have an income despite his illness. When Mr Aryal passed away the job as groundskeeper was given to his oldest son, Sahadev, who was never able attend school. Clinic Nepal also sponsored three of the five younger children to attend school.

Get Involved

Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation Projects 
Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation Projects   when Clinic Nepal began in 1997 over 50% of patients had water borne diseases.  Today that figure stands at only 1%. 
In Nepal the majority of the population live in a rural setting.  Often water sources are a river, mountain spring or well.  While those villages living in high mountains may have access to cleaner water than those downstream, open sources of water are never completely free of dangerous bacteria.   In the lowland Terai area, where Clinic Nepal is situated, drinking water comes mainly from the ground.  Traditionally open wells are used, with the risk of contamination from animal and human waste high.  The other option of river water usual means much time is spent by women and girls collecting water from far way.

  Sanitary toilets or latrines, are still, unfortunately, extremely rare in the majority of the country.  With many people defecating in the open, the risk of contamination is again very high, especially for children, the sick and elderly. In this area, risk of attack by wild animals was also present.


Hari Bhandary, the founder and chairman of Clinic Nepal, had always recognised these problems and had long had the desire to introduce clean drinking water and sanitation to improve the health of his neighbours. <click to history>  Once the Friendship Clinic was established, the next step was therefore obvious – a clean drinking water project and hygienic sanitation facilities for all.

Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation

Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation Projects   when Clinic Nepal began in 1997 over 50% of patients had water borne diseases.  Today that figure stands at only 1%. 

clinic nepal
In Nepal the majority of the population live in a rural setting.  Often water sources are a river, mountain spring or well.  While those villages living in high mountains may have access to cleaner water than those downstream, open sources of water are never completely free of dangerous bacteria.   In the lowland Terai area, where Clinic Nepal is situated, drinking water comes mainly from the ground.  Traditionally open wells are used, with the risk of contamination from animal and human waste high.  The other option of river water usual means much time is spent by women and girls collecting water from far way.

  Sanitary toilets or latrines, are still, unfortunately, extremely rare in the majority of the country.  With many people defecating in the open, the risk of contamination is again very high, especially for children, the sick and elderly. In this area, risk of attack by wild animals was also present.

Hari Bhandary, the founder and chairman of Clinic Nepal, had always recognised these problems and had long had the desire to introduce clean drinking water and sanitation to improve the health of his neighbours. <click to history>  Once the Friendship Clinic was established, the next step was therefore obvious – a clean drinking water project and hygienic sanitation facilities for all.

 

Clean Water Project began in 2001, with the installation of tube  wells and pumps, each shared by five to ten households.To date, 241 water pumps have been installed.

Sanitary Latrines in 1997 when Clinic Nepal began  of the 2,865 households in Megauli only 213 had a latrine. 

 
clinic nepal

Clinic staff visited local villages, family groups, and individual homes to educate people about the importance of personal hygiene and clean food handling practices. For example, the simple act of handwashing after defecation reduces disease tremendously, particularly among children

Missionproviding clean drinking water and sanitation for all

In 10 years, 2,652 sanitary latrines have been installed in Megauli VDC, one per household.  Nepal has 3,913 Village Development Communities (VDCs), of which thirteen have been declared a ‘no open latrine' zone.  Meghauli is the only one of         these communities to have achieved full sanitation, a unique occurrence in Nepal !

      To celebrate this “No Open Defecation Zone: status, on 20th April 2009, there was a grand festival in Meghauli organised by Clinic Nepal and the VDC.  Students, local people, Clinic Nepal staff and the chief guest, the Local District Development Officer, celebrated this great achievement amidst dancing and music. 

SUPPLY AND DEMAND

They planned to get the building up next year's July monsoons just eight months away. While Hari got a proper bill of works in Nepal, Peter and Beryl ran off 1000 copies of a puzzle sheet, explaining about the clinic and offering prizes. They charged 1 opened a set. As word of the clinic spread, donors started pledging 5 pounds of 10 pounds. Peter met a plumber who gave him a fiver." Come to Nepal to work on me clinic," Peter begged him. "I can't" said the plumber. "I've got a wife and baby at home." But next day he was back with a van full of plumbing fittings. Suddenly Peter realized he could be asking for things just as valuable as money. He began to contact local companies and intern received plumbing supplies, flat pack furniture, tools, nuts, holds, and screws, paints and cleaning products. Firms even donated pens and pencils, overalls, toilet rolls, toys and books. 

From any available phone or fax, Hari called with progress reports. The foundations were to be trenches filled with boulders. With reinforced concrete on top. the village women spent days ferrying tons of rocks the size of small footballs from the river. Men and women together dug the trenches and mixed the concrete.

Laying the Foundations

After petitioning the Nepalese government for three months, Hari was given permission for a week's expedition to salvage fallen timber for doors and windows from the Chitwan National Park. Eighty villagers using elephants hauled the fallen logs, three feet wide by up to 12 feet long, six moles through streams and across the riverbed to the sawpits at Meghauli. Back in Bristol, Peter spoke at business dinners. In Gibraltar, Kevin held sponsored bed pushes and Gladiators parties and constructed moles of pennies though the main street. Slowly funds mounted up. Now it was time to ship the supplies to Nepal, but how could they ever afford to move such bulk? 

Kevin come to the rescue, arranging for it to go in a container bound for the Nepal based Gurkha regiment. They had a week to pack and rush everything to Bisector to be loaded for the five months passage. In February, Kevin and Peter flew to Katmandu to check on the clinic's progress in person. They had also scheduled meetings with half a dozen government dignitaries. How quickly would electricity reach the site? They asked a land department official. He wouldn't meet their eyes. "I have to persuade lots of people," he said. "Lots and lots of people..." 

"Whisky or money," Hari whispered." That's what it will take." They left in disgust. "I will not bribe them," vowed Peter." Anyway, I have other ideas." Back at his hotel, he phoned the Kathmandu times. A peace appeared next day :" New free Clinic for Meghauli". They soon heard that electricity would be supplied. Peter and Kevin returned home to learn that Beryl had received cheques totaling 5400 pounds. Soon the funds topped 9000 pound and the clinic's construction was no longer in doubt. In March 1997, the villagers laid the foundation stones. Over the ensuing months, Hari wrote and faxed constantly to update them. The walls had gone up; the sewers were in; the windows were being installed. "And now we are ready on time for your visit," wrote Hari at last.

Fitting' finale

Kevin began raising a team of servicemen and women to travel to Nepal to help with the building and with training clinic staff. Thirty-five people applied nurses, engineers, electricians, and carpenters. Then, phoning an ex Gurkha fried stationed in Nepal, set about organizing two weeks of naval mountain adventure training for that September. The team would also work on the clinic on the grounds that it was a humanitarian project. One the day of the flight, Kevin and his band of servicemen and women joined Beryl and Peter and 40 Boxes of donated medical supplies at Heathrow Airport. "What on earth is that lot?" said the check in assistant blankly, eyeing the mound of carefully taped boxes. "Do you realize you'll have to pay 4000 pound in excess baggage?" 

Kevin demanded to see her boss. "it's in a good cause," Kevin explained to him. "Oh, go on," interrupted the airline official, throwing their passports on the desk." take them and leave me in peace! And good luck." Thirty-eight people cheered. In Kathmandu, a familiar figure was waiting in the arrival lounge. Beryl marched towards the tall, shy looking young man. " How you've grown!" she exclaimed, hugging him." Oh, it's lovely to see you." She had to stop, unable to speak for tears. When she looked up she realized that Hari too had tears in his eyes. 

In Meghauli they found the neat brick built clinic standing surrounded by banana trees beside a stream. The next new weeks were a whirl of hammering and installed furniture. Nurses trained clinic helpers, teaching them basic hygiene, and first aid. Peter and Beryl wandered though rooms smelling of fresh paint and newly sawn wood. "Who'd have believed we could have come this far so quickly?" said Peter. 

On October 20, 1997 the village pipes and drums band paraded though Meghauli to the clinic, while the whole village followed, clapping and cheering. At the opening ceremony Hari got up and spoke. "Thank you for showing my people that somebody cares," he said, bowing to Beryl, Kevin and Peter. 

Later that evening, Hart's parents invited the couple to a celebratory meal at their house_ the same house they had eaten at ten years earlier. During supper, Beryl felt a tug at her elbow. "Beryl," said Hari. "Would you mind if I called you Mum?" I would be honored," said Beryl, touched at this simple gesture of respect and gratitude. "Now I have four sons". 

Today the "friendship Clinic ", as it is known, has a full time nurse and a clinic manager; a doctor takes surgeries twice a week and specialists visit from time to time. In the nurse's office, a woman cradles a seemingly lifeless baby, its head covered in livid scabs. "A severe case of cradle cap," says Chunmaya, the nurse. She dresses the baby's head and gives the young woman dried milk to feed her child the mother is too malnourished to produce milk herself. 

Among the patients are Hari's mother and father, who have benefited greatly from local treatment for their TB. Hari organizes medical volunteers and funding for the clinic, though the Shores are still-raising money towards its upkeep, at the last count, they had raised more than 25000 pounds. "If you're climbing a sand hill, its hard work," points out Peter. "But if you're running down one sand hill, you're halfway up the next before you realize it . That's how beryl and I tackle problems." 

A FRIENDSHIP THEY COULDN'T FORGET

'Please write to me,' said the Nepali boy. But the English couple decided to do much more 
By Julie Akhurst

The bus grounded to a halt. The driver and the three Nepalese passengers hopped off, leaving Beryl and Peter Shore alone. "This isn't the Chitwan National Park," said Beryl gazing round at the scrubby undergrowth and distant village. "We're lost." The couple, celebrating their thirtieth wedding anniversary with a trip to Nepal, had spent all day on board the bone shaking bus in the hope of seeing the rhinos and tigers of Chitwan. Now, shouldering their rucksacks, they walked determinedly away from the bus and from the clamouring youths surrounding it. 

Peter saw a tall, slim boy beside the road. "Chitwan?" Peter asked. The boy pointed up a flat, narrow track, flanked by banana trees, paddy fields and grass roofed mud houses. It was getting dark. The boy began loping along beside them. "What are yours names?" he asked in good English. 

Beryl looked at him properly for the first time. He looked about 17 . His faded clothes were neatly pressed, his smile genuine and unlike the other boys, he wasn't trying to sell them anything. He reminded her of her own sons. "Beryl and Peter," she answered. "And yours?" "I am Hari Bhandari," he said proudly."! I live in Meghauli." Rounding a bend, they came to a muddy river, 50 yards wide. "How do we get across?" asked Peter "You can't," said Hari. "The bridge is ten miles downriver." Peter slid his rucksack off his shoulders. "Then we'll sleep here." Hari gaped. "Oh no, sahib, you cannot, there are wild animals. Please stays in my home no money." 

A wild dog racing through the trees, a dead vulture in its mouth, was enough to convince the couple. They followed Hari to a mud house in the village. One of Hari's sisters, a girl of about 12, brought them two brass tumblers of buffalo mild, while his elder sister bent over a Primus stove, preparing rice and curry. The English couple sat down on a rattan mat to eat. "But where's your meal?" Beryl asked Hari. He shrugged. "I've eaten" Beryl glanced at Peter. Clearly they were eating the whole family's food. Taking the bare minimum, they passed the rest to the family, who fell in it smiling. 

Hari gave the Shores his rattan bed in the roof and woke them before 6 am, in time to catch the only bus out of the village. 

"When you get him," he said," Please write to me." He scribbled down an address. Thank you for coming to Nepal." Back home in Henleaze, Bristol, the Shores sat down to writ to the teenager who had fed them his own supper and asked nothing in return. "Hello, Hari, we got back safely after having a fantastic time........." they told him what their sons Kevin, Nigel and Craig were doing. Within weeks they had reply. Hari's letter was full of news of his work and family, still at school at 17, he was one of the privileged few in Meghauli, a member of the high up Chhetri caste. "I am studying English and wish one day to leave my village to help others," he wrote. 

Remote Hopes. 

A regular correspondence developed between Meghauli and Bristol. Hari write mat, he'd gone Kathmandu to work as a waiter. Within another couple of years the shores learned that he was teaching English. Then he moved to a leprosy hospital to work as a fund raising secretary, in charge of selling clothes and souvenirs made by the patients." I am happy," he wrote. "Now I know I make people's leves better." 

For ten years they kept in touch. Then, in November 1996, Hari write to say his parents had both contracted TB. He had return home to look after them. "They have been going ten miles to Bharatpur for treatment," he wrote. " A day's walk. Meghauli still has no telephone. I go home to find how ill they are." The Shores waited, worried, for his next letter. In it he sounded his old, determined self." I have a new plan!" he wrote. Enclosed was a rough sketch of a small hut with a corrugated iron roof. " This is the health center I now plan to build in Meghauli so my parents will not have to travel to see a doctor." A free clinic, it would treat 20 to 30 people a day. " It will cost about 1800 pounds can you help us raise the money?" he added. Next day in the office where he worked as buildings manager, Peter faxed the sketch to his son Kevin, a 36 years old petty officer medical assistant with the royal Navy in Gibraltar, asking for his thoughts. 

Peter began gathering information on the medical situation ion Nepal. He discovered there was only one doctor for every 21000 people and the hospital treating Hari's parents covered a catchment area of 100 square miles. TB and leprosy were rife and lice expectancy was 53 years. Then Kevin rang from Gibraltar. "Dad, this is little more than garden shed" he burst out." Surely we can do better?" He had a plan drawn up for a brick built clinic with proper glazed windows. "We don't want a white elephant." Peter told him." This must be self financing and low maintenance." 

They sent the revised plan to Hari. "We felt this was more me type of building you'd need," wrote Peter. "How much would it cost if the villagers built it?" "How are we ever going to raise that?" Beryl demanded when she heard the target was 5000 pounds. "Just like we've always done," said Peter, who, like his sons, was a member of the Scouting Association. "You hold coffee moorings; I'll see what I can do with the Scouts; Kevin can raise funds though the navy. And, if we fall short, we'll just have to cover it ourselves."

About this site

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