From the moment when I first arrived in Kathmandu I fully believe that I was adopted into the VCD Nepal family. This sense of sibling love and community was definitely prevalent for the entirety of the trip but was strongest in Torikhet, Chitwan. Working with the children in the library and then living in the home alongside the incredibly inspiring family was truly an incredible experience.
The library is an amazing resource for the local children and it is clear to see how much they appreciate all of the work done by VCD to give them this opportunity. The children are so much fun to spend time with as they are really grateful for the work of the volunteers as well as being overly eager to be involved in every activity available! During my time in Torikhet I experienced a huge range of experiences that I will never be able to recreate, from successfully teaching the young girls to whip their hair as part of a lesson on the body parts to attending a women’s group meeting to eating Jack fruit which is still the most bizarre thing I have ever tried and regularly being beaten at badminton by children. It was an amazing experience and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who is interested in immersing themselves in Nepalese culture and spending time with the most hyper-active but adorable group of children.
Although the majority of my time was spent on placement at the library I was still given the opportunity to sightseeing around Kathmandu and Pokhara as well as going on a jungle safari. The four weeks that I have spent here have passed in the blink of an eye but would take a lifetime to be able to describe everything that I have done and seen in this amazing country. I have literally seen a funeral and multiple weddings and absolutely everything in between.
I can’t begin to cover all of the awe-inspiring sights that Nepal has to offer but the fact that I have taken nearly 3000 photos in the space of a month should speak for itself! I definitely feel as if I have grown in confidence during the time of this trip and know that it is an once in a lifetime experience that could never be replicated or forgotten! I will always be extremely grateful for my time here and know that this would have been impossible if it was not for the brilliant and inspiring work of the VCD family. Thank you so so much for everything.
Francesca Killoran, UK, Volunteer at Chitwan library for 4 weeks