A critical principle of AHAN is to nurture seeds once they have been planted. It is a goal of AHAN Headquarters in Denver to support local leaders in independent AHAN projects of their own choosing. Financial support is sometimes provided, but more often advice, encouragement and step by step project planning is offered to any AHAN leader who requests it. This month we have received progress reports from both AHAN Mongolia and AHAN Nepal.
From Nepal, we received word from Puja Rai who is busy preparing for an AHAN delegation’s visit to Nepal in January 2006 led by Homma Kancho. Puja has been coordinating support for the Choeling Monastery School for children by AHAN. Click here for related articles on AHAN in Nepal.
Recently Puja published an article in the Himalayan Times
www.thehimalayantimes.com excerpts of which are written below:
MIDWAY: Poles Apart By Puja Rai
Our college arranged a Bal Bhojan programme on December 29. We reached the venue near Basantapur at 9 am. I could see a shabby building. As we went inside, I saw small rooms and children in tattered clothes. But what was remarkable was that they all seemed to be quite happy and content.
I learnt that these deprived children were fed twice a day by various charitable organisations. The meal was simple dal, bhat and tarkari. I soon started chatting with a boy named Bijay Rai. He didn’t like tarkari so he ate dal-bhat. How these children relished the daal-bhat was quite amazing. Bai Bhojan was within the reach of only those children staying in this particular building. My mind was flooded with questions like: What about the numerous street children who had no shelter or food? How can they improve their future? What has Nepal to offer? Who is responsible for their condition?
In sharp contrast to Bal Bhojan, I had an opportunity to attend a gala at Soaltee Crown Plaza on December 31. Though the ticket was priced at Rs. 5,000 I did not have to buy it as I happened to be a guest. The fabulous lights, decorations, beautiful ladies, their glittering dresses and expensive cars transported me to an entirely different world. When I entered the palatial dinner hall, the cuisine confused me. I could not decide which one to choose from the vast variety – Chinese, Japanese, Italian, Indian, BBQ, among others. People were enjoying themselves-singing, dancing, eating till night and wishing each other Happy New Year 2006.
Within a short span of time I had experienced two different worlds. One dealt with deprived children while the other consisted of wealthy people. I am confused about the different lifestyles people are leading in our country. I wonder at the materialistic world, and compare it to the Marxist theory of haves and have-nots. Deep down my heart I feel a sense of injustice.
I also feel guilty of not being able to make any difference in their lives. I wish I could do something for those street children and motivate them to study and improve their lot. I wish I could feed all of them. I wish such thoughts of mine could also inspire the others to bring about a change collectively and individually.
From Mongolia, we received word from Mongolia Aikido Nippon Kan Advisor Bold Tumenjargal and Mr. Ganzorig Dashdorj who have worked hard together to open their own Aikido dojo in Ulaanbaatar. Mr. Dashdorj is the owner of a very successful security company and trains his many employees in many of the martial arts, which now includes Aikido. AHAN Mongolia staff members are also working to coordinate the delivery of the next shipment of thirty refurbished computers from AHAN General Headquarters in Denver, Colorado to the Gandan Monastery Temple in Ulaanbaatar. The Gandan Temple is the largest Tibetian Buddhist Temple complex in Mongolia.
Besides Homma Kancho’s planned visit to Nepal in January of 2006, he is also planning to visit India, Bangladesh, Japan and Mongolia to teach Aikido and promote awareness for AHAN. In Mongolia Homma Kancho will personally check on the next computer delivery and also check on another AHAN project in Mongolia; The School Named Hope.