HDFA Newsletter | June 2016

Celebrating the Anniversary of the first ascent of Mount Everest

In May a group of strong supporters and mountaineering enthusiasts came together to celebrate the Anniversary of the first Everest Summit by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay. Delicious Indian and Nepali food was served whist our chairman Duncan Chessell shared some of his own experiences summiting Mt Everest and in Canberra we heard some tales from Zac Zaharias on his multiple expeditions to Mt Everest from 1988-2010.

We also shared two shorter videos about two of our projects in Nepal. They offered a wonderful impression of the progress so far and future ambitions. For those that couldn’t make the dinners but who are interested, here are two short videos which overviews our current projects in Nepal.




Seti Devi and Chamuna Devi 



Thank you very much wine sponsor Lofty Valley Wines; to Kinfolk Café, Taste of Nepal, Copper Chimney, CMI Toyota and Lofty Valley Wines for donating goods and services for the silent auctions which raised over $12,000 to help secure a brighter future for the children of Nepal.

KPMG fundraising event in Perth

KPMG (Perth) held a movie event to raise awareness of HDFA and raise funds. Clients, friends and family came together for an exclusive screening of the award winning documentary Sherpa.

Thank you KPMG, your fundraising efforts have been deployed to rebuild schools in Nepal following the 2015 earthquake and help ensure a generation of children have a place to learn.

Seti Devi School

We are pleased to announce the completion of two new permanent classroom blocks (4 classrooms) for the Seti Devi School in Thumpakhar, Sindupalchowk District. Your donations made during the weeks after the earthquakes of 2015 have been deployed to rebuilding. This will enable the kids to get back to school just in time for the onset of the monsoon. Our In Country Manager, Jo Chaffer and members of our NGO partner organisation, PHASE Nepal, attended the opening ceremony. Using earthquake-resistant designs, the classrooms are already in use! The spacious, well lit and well insulated classrooms make a huge difference for the learning environment of the children.

Seti Devi School has several more school blocks are being planned for the next few months, funded by Juniper Trust and delivered through the Pasang Lhamu Foundation.

Galleries of the Seti Devi School beforeduring and after the rebuild. 

Sustainable support in Sindupalchowk: HDFA are starting the slow and careful planning of a long term program to support this very poor, hard to reach area, initially via the reconstruction of health posts for communities.. Wide-reaching water and sanitation projects are also underway, ensuring that communities have access to a safe water supply, and longer-term livelihood projects will improve food security and build resilience.

There is a long way to go, and we won’t be able to realise our ambitious plans without the generous support from our donors across the world.

More donations are needed to finance 9 new classrooms at the Chamuna Devi school rebuild due to commence in October-December 2016. We’ll be preceding this rebuild with a training program to enable unskilled, unemployed locals to earn a living as certified electricians, masons, plumbers and carpenters. There’s a huge demand for these skills locally and in Kathmandu as donor funded rebuild continues.

If you are not able to donate, please consider letting your friends and networks know about how they can directly impact the lives of school children in a positive way in this time of need by forwarding this email or sharing the link on social media.

Ghunsa Hydro Scheme – more than just electricity

After completing major repairs to the Ghunsa hydro scheme aqueduct last year, unfortunately in March 2016 the generator failed. HDFA helped by providing part funding and part loan to the village; enabling Ghunsa to acquire a new generator, pay for installation by and transport. The hydro supplies electricity to 65 households in Ghunsa, the school, health post and local businesses; and 20 houses in nearby village Foley. 

The installation of electric meters to each household has been completed which has allowed the hydro committee to charge fees for usage and HDFA is assisting the committee to build a sustainable business model for the hydro scheme. It is planned that these fees may also be used to support other community projects. This is a KEY step towards creating a sustainable revenue model that can be managed by the community for the community.

The importance of the hydro scheme is not just the electricity it produces. The impact is less damage to forests, greater time available for education or other work (improved productivity) instead of wood gathering, reduced respiratory illness due to less wood fire usage and better lighting and heating leading to improvement in the overall standard of living.

Calling volunteers / teachers

We are always on the look out for suitable candidates for our teacher volunteer programs.

Our volunteer teachers work on teacher coaching/mentoring with Nepalese teachers. Improving lesson planning with new ideas and execution with teacher improved techniques and methods.

Teacher volunteering is not about doing the job of a Nepalese teacher or plugging a gap for a few weeks, that’s not going to have lasting impact. Development work is about achieving a sustainable lasting impact and improving the Nepalese teaching standard. So you will not be reading endlessly in English or taking on the role of a teacher. Your time will be focussed to achieving long lasting improved outcomes for teaching quality.

At the same time the enthusiasm of the Nepalese children make sure your voluntary teaching in Nepal a highly rewarding experience and there is plenty of time to for cultural exchanges and sharing of language.

Contact us at info@hdfa.org to further discuss options and details.


The 30th June is the end of the financial year. Fortunately there is still time to make a tax deductable donation to the Himalayan Development Foundation Australia. Remember that all gifts offer $2 are fully tax deductable for Australian tax residents.

DONATE online and receive an instant tax deductable receipt.




Kind Regards,

Himalayan Development Foundation Australia

Duncan Chessell

All News Articles Ghunsa/Kanchenjunga

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