Christmas appeal 2019: Please help us support Sarita and her daughter
Dec 04, 2019
During our recent trip to Nepal we had the great privilege of being invited into the home of an amazing young woman called Sarita*. She lives in a tiny house on a steep mountainside with her young daughter, Alina*.
Despite having so little and, as we would soon discover, having experienced a life of extreme hardship, she welcomed us with great generosity. As we arrived, Sarita and Alina offered us flowers, a ceremonial scarf and a red ‘tika’ in the middle of our forehead. We sat on the floor to drink tea and learn more about their lives.
Sarita’s story sums up so much about the challenges of life in this part of Nepal, and how our work – thanks to your support – is making a difference. We want to share her story with you today and ask that you please give generously this Christmas to help provide people like Sarita and Alina with a brighter future.
In 2015 a 7.8 magnitude earthquake killed many hundreds of people in the Indrawati region. Sarita’s husband was among them. She is now widowed and living alone with little Alina. In this poor region where many families have faced unimaginable devastation, layered on top of entrenched poverty, her tiny family is among the most vulnerable of the vulnerable.
Above: Inside Sarita’s home.
While it was heartbreaking to consider what these two had been through, there was also hope. Just outside was a greenhouse – a greenhouse she built with the help of HDFA. And inside the greenhouse Sarita was growing a bumper crop of tomatoes. In fact, we had toured a number of HDFA greenhouses in the region by this stage, and Sarita’s crop of tomatoes was undoubtedly the best we’d seen. Additionally, she is also now growing more than 15 types of all seasonal and (non-seasonal) vegetables, meaning much greater nutrition for herself and for Alina.
The tomato crop is providing Sarita with a source of income and stability. It means that when her daughter starts school soon Sarita will be able to properly support her. Sarita herself worked from a very young age and did not have the chance to finish school. An education will give her daughter greater choices in life. A simple tomato crop is helping to make this possible. Will you help too by giving this Christmas?
Our Seeds of Hope agricultural empowerment initiative has so far provided 200 greenhouses and around 100 citrus orchards to the most vulnerable families in this region. This means a better variety of fruit and vegetables can be grown year-round and families are able to generate additional income. (Before HDFA began supporting the area, only 3–4 months’ worth of food was grown each year.) In most cases it is women who are leading these new family farms.
Your gift can help us deliver Seeds of Hope – developing skills to grow income-generating crops and setting up a community cooperative fund, so that families who want to extend what they are doing or take part for the first time can borrow from the fund and repay their own community when circumstances allow. This kind of microfinancing allows for a powerful multiplier effect, so that any money HDFA (with your help) puts into the co-op now will have ripple effects well into the future.
This Christmas, please give generously to support this initiative and people like Sarita and her little girl. Australian money goes a long way in Nepal and even a small gift can make a big difference to someone’s life.
$30 is a meaningful donation – and if you can make that a regular monthly gift it becomes something really special
$70 can build a greenhouse
$250 into the farmers’ co-op could help three families establish crops, feeding a portion of profits back into the co-op over time to assist many more families
$600 covers the cost of educating a child for a whole year (meaning that for just $50 per month you can give the gift of education, radically changing someone’s life)
$1200 enables a promising child to access higher education (high school or university) in Kathmandu for a year. Up that to $5000 and you are providing an entire higher education for a promising young person, becoming a true hero in their life
Merry Christmas! We look forward to being able to tell you how your generous donation this Christmas makes an impact and leads to more stories of hope and renewal in Nepal next year.
Andrew, Duncan and the HDFA team
Andrew Stace, Chair | Duncan Chessell, CEO
PS – just to give you an idea of how far your money can go in Nepal, we can provide a full health consultation for what amounts to less than $4 a visit, even for outreach visits.
Above: Gazing down over the Indrawati valley
*Names changed to protect identities
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