2017 – yet another active and good year in WAWCAS

650 new women started in the program and are now on a good track on their way to a deeply changed life for themselves and their families. 

We still reach our high rate of success regarding 99% repayment of the loans, all children going to school and a big decrease in alcohol misuse and domestic violence – two parameters that follow each other. 

We have had to say good bye to two very good LPLs, Chandika and Rajina. They both got married – congratulations to both – and they are planning to move out of the country. We also had to say good bye to our very good technical assistant, Bikash BK, who has got a job in the Government’s District Livestock Office and to our project leader in farming, Suman Gajurel, who got 18 months of training in agriculture in Japan, because he is very competent. 

Over the years we have learned that it is a condition in WAWCAS that good people have to leave, because their life situation changes. It always raises a need for hiring new people and for going through the long certification process with them. But we look at it in a positive way – that the people who leaves WAWCAS will always bring the expertise, the competences and the approach to development work, they have built together with us, with them to other parts of their life, and then WAWCAS will make sense and be passed on in other relations, and this is great. 

We have hired six new LPLs this year to replace those who left and to grow the organization to meet our goal of 750 new women next years, and a new technical assistant within farming.
We get a lot of applicants, and it is a long process with interviews and a written exam, before we are ready to choose the right persons, which are persons we believe can handle the WAWCAS process in a sustainable way and who show their strength in different difficult situations, they will meet in their work. 

The WAWCAS data system has just been finished.  Sirish, Program Manager, has lead this quite complex and long process. Thank you so much to Midas, the Nepalese company that has been responsible for setting up the full system from the very bottom, and who has given a lot of time and support to our team to successfully finish the system.
Also thank you to Christine Thorsen and Jørgen Fogh Hansen from Denmark, who have supported the development from the very start and helped us to keep track on the way. 

Sirish writes later in this newsletter about the data system. This is a very important step for the WAWCAS Program for documentation and evaluation and is the basis for making relevant changes in the program. 

This autumn we invited four women and two trainers to Denmark to share their stories and experiences from WAWCAS and to give the listeners a chance to hear the women´s stories from their own mouth. Unfortunately, and very surprisingly, only one trainer was given visa. We made a lot of efforts to get the visas for all of them, but we had to give up only 10 days before their arrival. We will definitely try again.

Sarika, one of WAWCAS’ very experienced LPLs and team leader in Kathmandu, got her visa, which was so nice. Later in the newsletter she will tell about her visit to Denmark. 

WAWCAS craft is one of the specialized areas in WAWCAS. This year, and after hiring Urmila as project leader for craft, this area has really grown in WAWCAS. The women make very nice products, and several of them are sold in Denmark. Read more and see the pictures of the products later where Urmila writes about the WAWCAS craft. 

We visited both new areas during Nina’s visit in October, Gokarna near Kathmandu and Tahanu near Lamjuing. Really poor women live there, and there is a big potential for development. The LPLs (trainers) are doing very well, but even though it can be hard work. They have to go very far to reach the women. But it is such a beautiful nature, which we all enjoy. And as they all put it: to see how the women grow and change gives so much energy for continuing the work. 

We also visited our very exciting area Dhamilkuwa, where we have nine WAWCAS-groups. They have now merged into a big cooperative and are also having regular meetings as usual in their small groups. Krishna, Finance Officer, writes later in the newsletter about how she supports the women. 

In the coming year the program will include 750 new women. 
We are looking forward to learning from the data system and to get it implemented in the everyday life, so that we will be able to show results and impact in paragraphs based on the data system. 

We will pay special attention to improve the whole team’s understanding of business development to make them even stronger in supporting the women to grow their businesses and to see new business opportunities.
Farming will also be a focus this year. We will develop into mushroom farming and more vegetable farming together with all the goat farming, we already have. 

We are looking forward to the year to come.
Thank you so much for all the support you give WAWCAS in many different ways. 

This is what makes it possible to make a huge difference for many women and their families. 

We wish you all a peaceful Christmas and a Happy New Year. 

With warm greetings we wish you a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year – Sangeeta and Nina, founders of WAWCAS 

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