May 2020 : Namaste Didi and Bahini!
It’s so lovely the way the Nepalese call their women friends Didi and Bahini, Big Sister and Little Sister. So appropriate for Soroptimists – we are ‘Best Sisters’.
We are partnering with the charity ChoraChori in combatting violence against children in Nepal. We support their work with young women, many being the victims of rape and abduction. They are from the bottom of society. Our focus is on setting up new refuges, and providing training and support for girls.
Because of Covid 19, the planned work of ChoraChori is on hold. However, the dire circumstances of the women and children they support have only deepened. The girls currently in the refuges are under lockdown and safe, but this work still needs to be financed.
In Dhanusha District, south Nepal, ChoraChori had been working to set up vocational training for women, an education centre and a refuge. Suddenly, everything has changed. ChoraChori is now ‘on the ground’ providing basic food supplies for the women and girls to save them from starving.
In Nepal’s diverse society, there are 128 separate ethnic groups. These, along with clan, family, caste and gender, are good predictors of your chances in life. Victims of rape have no ‘advantages’. Land and citizenship are mainly denied to them; without citizenship they get no government aid – no food, no help.
ChoraChori is directing all its efforts there to feed the community it started work with.
The question is can we Soroptimists help the children? Can we give ourselves a few challenges at home and therefore be Best Didi to the girls supported by ChoraChori? Remember, our pledge is to support the charity for three years.
Please let me know what your club is up to. Keep writing and posting on your social media about what is happening. I’m more than happy to join your virtual meetings (via Zoom or similar). I’m trying to keep up to date with the situation in Nepal, so there is always news!
Kindest regards and best wishes to you all at this very challenging time.
SI South Lancashire Region Ambassador for ChoraChori
(With thanks to Moira Hutchinson, Ambassador, SI Southern England)