inspire
Founder The Venerable Sangya Dorje Tamang
The "family" was the inspiration of the venerable Sangya Dorje Tamang. Sangya was raised in the hillside village of Bhapabari in the Makwanpur district south of Kathmandu. The child of subsistence farmers, he was only about to attend the village school until his third year. When he was ten Sangya went to work in Kathmandu, labouring long hours in a textile factory. “Our life if full of suffering and struggle. Many of us must work for our livelihood.” He worked for two years as a servant and then as a cook in a simple restaurant. In his late teens his life changed dramatically when he moved to Boudha and began to study Buddhism under the venerable Pema Lama Tamang. Sangya, having lost his own childhood is acutely aware of the suffering of other children in Nepal. He does not want any child to suffer as he did as a result of poverty. In founding the Nifon Foundation of Nepal, a government registered, non profit organisation, Sangya has dedicated his life to helping the underprivileged children of Nepal but he cannot do it alone.
THE CHILDREN
Jeevan Tamang
Jeevan, the youngest child in Nifon's care was illegtimate. His mother struggled to earn and living and support her child but was unable to keep him with her.
Mamata Chyopang
Mamata is six years old, she was born in Chyopang family in Makwan district. In Nepal there is still a cast system and religion plays a big part in social order. Mamata was born into the very lowest cast and her family are very poor. The Chyopang family are uneducated and illiterate. On a trip to the Makwan district during the program Sangya met Mamata’s family, he knew the background. They were in very critical condition due to abject poverty. Mamata was saved from her difficult life and has been at Nifon since last year 2012.
Indrajit Tamang
Indrajit is seven years old, he was born in Mahji family. He is not of the Tamang cast his family belong to the very lowest cast in Nepal. The Majhi people’s are fisherman. His parent’s are separated and their occupation means they live day to day so they can’t afford to educate their children or provide for their basic needs. Indrajit enjoys playing football and has younger brother Jeevan Tamang also at the Nifon Orphanage
Sweta Tamang
Sweta Tamang is eight years old she was born in Lalitpur district of Nepal. Her father died and her mother survives on subsistence farming. Her mother can’t afford to educate her or provide for her basic needs. She enjoys dancing.
Babita Bohara
Babita was only five when she began work on the family farm on the slopes of the Himalayas, tending to the cattle and the crops. Due to the economic condition of her family she was unable to attend school. Her story might have been that of so many other daughters of struggling Nepalese families had Sangya of Nifon not intervened. Babita was classified as a child in need and her parents agreed to send her to Kathmandu so that she could have a future beyond the terraced hillsides where they struggled to grow sufficient food to feed their family. Babita was the second child to be taken under the care of the orphanage. She was able to attend school and quickly proved to be a very apt student as well as an accomplished dancer. As more children arrived in the orphanage Babita took on the role of older sister to her new family. She has not forgotten the family she left behind or the other village children whose lives are circumscribed by poverty. She looks forward to attending university to study music and dance. Babita dreams of being a singer, not so that she will be famous but so that she can help the children of Nepal. While she celebrates the rich cultural traditions of Nepal in her dance, Babita is very conscious of the economic poverty that is denying so many other children the opportunity to realise their potential as she is realising hers.
Aakash Choudragi
It is almost impossible for a single woman in Nepal to support her children. When Aakash was only an infant his father abandoned he and his mother, Tika. After much suffering and hardship she found work in the kitchen of the Mahan Siddhartha School hostel, cooking for the boarders which at that time included the Nifon children. Aakash was able to live in at the school and finally receive an education. When the Nifon children moved out into their own premises Tika and her son moved with them. Tika is the "house mother" at the orphanage.
Nima Tamang
Nima Tamang, the child of subsistence farmers, worked on the land tending to the crops and animals until he was eight years old. Lured by the promise of education he left the village and his family and went to the nearby town. Instead of the schooling he anticipated he was put to work washing dishes in a Hotel kitchen in a country where child exploitation is rife. Nima worked seven days a week and received no income. He was isolated from his family without protection or help. His situation came to the attention of Sangya Dorje Tamang of the Nifon Foundation. Nima was rescued from the Hotel and given a new home in the Nifon orphange in Kathmandu. He was sent to the M.S. school in Boudha and within a year moved up a year level. Now he is a happy confident sixteen year old who is doing well at school and enjoys break-dancing and sport. He aspires to go on to further education and become a social worker so that he can help other poor children whose childhoods are blighted by poverty.
Birman Tamang
When Birman Tamang was nine years old his sister brought him to Kathmandu and approached the Nifon orphanage asking if they would take him in so that he could have an education. His parents, subsistence farmers with ten children to support, were too poor to provide for him. Nepalese parents, who are unable to offer a future for their children, will often give up the child they consider to be most likely to succeed if given an opportunity. Birman's family would not be disappointed in him. He has made good progress at school and also aspires to go to college and be successful so that he can help other children like him.
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