A couple weeks ago, while leaving to come to a GLOW/BRO meeting, I ran into a lady who started telling me about her daughter. She was speaking too fast for me to understand and kept repeating "garip", which means "poor". I told her I was coming back the next day so she told me to go to her house. I wrote her name down so I could ask around to find her and called my didi to see if she knew her. She didn't and the lady's name ended up getting lost by the time I got to the GLOW/BRO meeting. A volunteer who used to live there also didn't recognize what I remembered of her name.
I ended up getting back to vil too late to ask around and the next day was a wedding. The day after that was my bai's birthday. I needed to get things together for my Moringa grant before the deadline so it was about a week later that I was finally able to search for this lady's house. I went to a FCHV's (Female Community Health Volunteer) house and talked with her a little bit. As the conversation was winding down, I asked about the lady. Literally, all I said was her first name and talked about her family. The FCHV was able to direct me to the lady's house just off of that!
I went to the lady's house to discover she was the mom of the little girl who has Down Syndrome! I have always been meaning to go to her house and talk with her, but until now - didn't make it. Long story short, she and another lady that lives there asked for help finding organizations to help their daughters. This was AMAZING to me because in Nepal, typically daughters are not seen as having much value. These women however were wanting to get them help!
Unfortunately, since I spent a lot of money on completing my grant - I did not have much to search for organizations. Instead, I called my mom and had her search for things and put out a request on the Nepal Facebook site to see if anyone knew of anything. One daughter is with Down Syndrome and the other lady's daughter has three disabilities - audial, visual, and physical. Down Syndrome was easy enough to find organizations and there are ones for the visually impaired as well as audial impairment, but having them combined is going to take more research!
.I have completed my grant edits and submitted it today so the plan tomorrow is to research for the dual disabilities. A few past volunteers posted some suggestions on my request for information on the Nepal Facebook site. They have been very helpful and I am looking forward to getting more information from one of the lady's. She mentioned making a communication board and the family's own sign language for the daughter. I tried communicating to the mom those ideas, but realized I didn't come as prepared to explain them in Nepali as I could have!
One of the Down Syndrome organizations quickly responded to me with a phone number. I gave it to the mom when I came to the house to share what I had learned. A little later in the evening, the mom called me and again - spoke fast Nepali. I couldn't completely understand her, but figured she had said she called the organization so I said "huncha". My bai was nearby and come to find out - I agreed to go with her to the big city with her and her daughter to meet with the organization!
I had a minor freakout 'cause I wasn't planning on being away from site that long and so soon. The next day, I went to her house on the way to the meeting. Come to find out, the plan is to go next week and the organization is really glad I contacted them and wants us all to go! I definitely like that the date to go is farther away than I thought! Here's hoping I have just as much success with finding and contacting other organizations for the little girl who has visual, audial, and physical disabilities!
As for the title? Me being asked to help people who have disabilities just as I am questioning why I am here is certainly a God thing! This is exactly what I want to do with my life! Being given the opportunity to do it has made me feel much more useful and fulfilled than I have been recently. What are some God things that have happened in your life recently?
P.S. I don't remember if I shared this on the last blog or not, but the unofficial blockade is officially over!!! Hopefully we'll be seeing the benefits of that trickling down to vil soon!!!