Visit from Nepal

In September, both Project Director Sangeeta Shrestha and Program Manager Sirish Shrestha travelled all the way from Nepal to Denmark to work together with Nina and others involved with WAWCAS. September was a month full of presentations, workshop, and meetings.

All of our sponsors, volunteers, and the board had the opportunity to meet up with the WAWCAS Project Director Sangeeta Shrestha and Program Manager Sirish Shrestha. The meeting took place in Denmark this September. Our Nepal team travelled all the way to Denmark, creating a perfect opportunity to work together and exchange experiences and ideas. Usually, this form of exchange happens through Skype or E-mail. They spent 10 days in Denmark, and it was not a relaxing holiday — on the contrary, they had a full schedule. We all managed to travel to Copenhagen and Aarhus to give presentations about WAWCAS. The presentations were given in connection with our cooperation with Arnold Busck, a Danish bookstore chain.

The owner of the bookstore, Helle Busck, just turned 50 years old. She had only one wish on ‘the birthday-wish-list,’ which was that if guests wanted to bring a present, she would like it to be to support WAWCAS.

The presentations took place in the bookstores and was a great opportunity for WAWCAS to expand awareness of the program.

Before the presentations, Arnold Busck had launched their new pre-school material, which some of the women’s children’s stories are a part of. The cooperation with Arnold Busch is making an important impact on our work – we are looking forward for further cooperation in the future.

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We also found time to further develop our new data system. We booked a full day to work on the system together with the Nepalese firm Midas, Christine Thorsen, Bodil Fogh Hansen, and Jørgen Fogh Hansen. The trio of volunteers contributed with their specialised knowledge about the field, while we had direct contact with the Nepalese company on Skype in order to follow the process and get instant feedback and testing. Midas is the company in Nepal that is working on developing WAWCAS data system. It was an amazing feeling to experience the hard work of all volunteers together with the Nepalese part of the team. The fact that we are able to work together across long distances is a huge value for WAWCAS. This way of working was very efficient and educational.

Finally, we found time to meet with our sponsors, the board of directors, and our volunteers within communication, fundraising, and accounting. We value the fact that our volunteers have the opportunity to meet each other and the people from Nepal, because it makes the job so much more enjoyable when you know the person behind the e-mail.

We have also finished how the process for gaining certification as a WAWCAS LPL needs to work. The program qualifies the LPL to independently train the women in the best way. The certification training educates the LPL in how to handle different levels in the program. The training and certification are very important parts of professionalising the WAWCAS concept.

During the visit, we all experienced how much we can change together across countries and types of involvement as long as we are clear on our shared focus and goals, and this experience is one of the most important things Sangeeta and Sirish will bring back to our team in Nepal.

Nina Schriver, International Program Director