My experience at Namaste Children’s House was one of unplanned fortune. During a time of personal distraught and devastation, I made a spontaneous decision to quit my dead end internship in Taipei to seek other self-fulfilling options to spend my summer. Two days later, I had a flight to Kathmandu booked, and I decided to volunteer at the Namaste Children’s House in Pokhara with my little sister. This decision is still, to this day, one of the best I’ve ever made.
Not only was I in Nepal, one of the most spiritually and culturally vibrant countries I’ve ever visited, I was in Pokhara – a whimsical city with all elements in reach. Pokhara is a place where water, countryside, mountains all collide in harmony – a perfect environment to experience inner harmony within myself.
I was greeted to the orphanage with such love and appreciation, and I was surprised as to how amazing the volunteer house was! Walking distance to waterfalls and rivers, it was far enough from the orphanage to feel like you could “get away,” but close enough to the orphanage so that each visit was a walk for exercise. Pokhara’s convenient location made it easy to venture into neighboring cities for the weekend, one of my favorite ventures was out to the animal kingdom of Chitwan.
The orphanage in itself was fantastic – spacious, comfortable, and I will never forget the amazing curry dhaal and rice prepared by the sisters of the orphanage (YUM!). Tiffin was always my favorite time of day though, an amazing afternoon snack of surprise! And let’s not get started about the delicious chai. Oh the chai. Namaste Children’s House also organized awesome outings for the children and the volunteers, one of my most memorable being taking a trip to a local theatre to watch a Nepali film with the kids. That experience is one I will never forget.
It was at NCH that I learned of a love that I never knew existed within myself, and tested my patience and stamina with children. It was so fulfilling to be teaching children who truly appreciated education. It was almost as if they knew how lucky they were to be receiving any form of education at all, unlike many children in other parts of the world. It was a very rewarding experience for my sister and I.
I was surprised as to how heartbroken I was to leave the children. I honestly never knew I had the capacity to love so much, and I thank Namaste Children’s House for expanding my heart and compassion in more ways than one.
Thank you, Namaste Children’s House. It’s been five years since I shared my love with you and I miss everyone there dearly. I will be back to visit soon.