Serki Sherpa, President of Yamuna Children’s Home, grew up himself in a children’s home, so he understands well the feelings of the 27 orphans he cares for. Serki Sherpa and his wife don’t have children of their own yet but live together with the children in a modest, 2-storey building Several staff members help to cook and take care of the children, and on a piece of land nearby, Serki’s wife grows cauliflower, corn, pumpkins and other vegetables for the Home.
“We are very happy to live with children, and it makes us happy when we get opportunities to serve the needy children of the streets and remote villages,” says Serki Sherpa. “I also grew up in the Buddha Memorial Children’s Home. I stayed there till I finished my Grade 12. I feel myself very fortunate to get an opportunity to live and study in the Children’s home, because my family was not able to send me to school with pencils, notebooks and study books”.
Serki Sherpa also teaches English grammar in Shwet Barahi School the same school all the children attend, situated just 10 minutes away from the Home.
In 2015 the Home moved from Pandit Gaun several kilometers outside Kathmandu to a nice new building in Gokarneshwor, Nayapati, a rural area close to the hills surrounding the Kathmandu Valley. The new building proved to be quite solid; after the earthquake you can see just a few minor cracks. Nevertheless, for the first weeks after the earthquake everyone was sleeping outside as the children were afraid to go inside the house. Gradually they returned back to normal by simply playing together.
The children are quite busy here; in the afternoon, once studies and homework are over, the children have time for games and cartoons. On Saturdays they also go for short hikes to the hills nearby.
One of the boys, Dilu Tamang, 12 years old, is suffering from the skin disease (Xeroderma Pigmentation – Seboretheic Dermatitis). Because of this, one of his eyes had to be taken out and one more operation will be needed to replace the eye with a plastic ball. He comes from a big family with 7 siblings. In the friendly atmosphere of Yamuna Children’s Home he’s an equal member of the community, playing together with other children despite his single eye. Currently he has one sponsor from Switzerland, but his treatment and sunscreen cream are very expensive, so another sponsor is still needed.
Serki Sherpa is funding this Children’s Home project from his own salary, on-off donations and sponsorship. Costs include rent of the building, school fees and food for the children and salaries for the staff. Of the 27 children living Yamuna now, 7 already have sponsors. Serki is actively seeking committed sponsors for each of the children and additional funds for projects such as his plan to add one more floor to the building and buy more bunk beds for the dormitories.
On July 29th our team visited Yamuna, bringing supplies received from Malaysian donors (read the original story here). While we were talking to Serki Sherpa, all the children were playing together outside, renewing their energy after the school exams which they’ve just passed. We distributed T-shirts, jackets, thin blankets, biscuits and noodles, in return for which the children greeted us with Nepal’s national anthem and popular Nepali song “Resham Firiri”!
For more impressions of Yamuna Children’s Home – see the video here.
You can find out more about Yumuna and the ways you can help by visiting their website: http://yamunahomes.org.np/yamuna-homes