Year 2012: Not the End, But A New Beginning!

Smita Magar,
Jhumlawang, 1st January 2013

While other side of the world was worried about the supposed ‘end of the world’, people of Jhumlawang were rejoicing. For them, the year of 2012 had brought a fruit of their hard work, cooperation and togetherness: the Community Health Centre opened to provide basic health facilities.

One of the major projects of the Jhumlawang Village Foundation (JVF-NEPAL), the Community Health Centre, formally began to provide basic health services from October 29. Once it comes into full operation, the centre will be providing its services not only to people from Jhumlawang but also to more than 25,000 people from neighbouring villages who have been suffering from basic health issues: chicken pox, stomach upset, cholera, fever, diarrhoea, flu, cuts and burns. It will be a relief for children and women who are more prone to basic health issues and infections.

“For years we had been dreaming for a health centre at the door,” Raj Bahadur Gurung, JVF Field Co-ordinator expresses his delight, “Now, we don’t have to travel days to have a basic treatment.” He informed that one full time Community Medical Assistant (Shiva Kumar Magar) and a Pharmacist (Parbati Gurung) are always in the health centre to provide services for needy ones. Two part time staffs (Rekha Maya Magar & Sita Magar) are also there to provide their assistance.

After nearly two years of ground preparation, the construction work of the project had started on 25th November 2010. For now, main completed section of a building is put in operation for basic health facilities while the construction work of other sections will continue.

“Much is yet to be done,” says Kush Buddha, an International Coordinator for JVF-Nepal, “Our plan is to run health camps with volunteer doctors, nurses, midwife and other medical experts in very near future.” Buddha added that the main goal is to gradually upgrade infrastructures and establish 15 Bed Hospital within 10 years of time.

Appreciating all the efforts and helping hands from individual to community to organizations from around the world Buddha says while there is a long way to go, the opening of the health centre for basic health facilities is a milestone. A milestone for further development of not only health centre but also other projects that are underway in the village. “The combined effort and belief towards our goal has brought this positive outcome,” he said, “We are thankful to everyone who have supported us throughout our journey and hope the goodwill relationship we share continues.”

The concrete journey for the health centre had started when Veronique Chenat from Association Humanitaire Partage et Soins, France organized two health camps in 2008 & 2009 in the village. The dream of having health services closer to the home brought the community together in working towards the idea of building the health post in the village. The members of community donated plots of land in their loved ones memories while making a commitment to do the work of at least 25 % of total budget. On the way, individuals, groups and organizations lent their supports in realizing this dream.

The plots of land for the project were donated by two villagers: Mr Gaj Bahadur Gurung and Mrs Thum Kumari Budha in memory of their sons whom they lost in separate accidents.

The estimated budget for the project is €65,000. The “Association Humanitaire Partage et Soins” generously has committed itself to contribute €58,000. Diaspora members are contributing not only with their expertise but also by giving about 5% of their earnings and by co-coordinating fundraising events around the world for this project of JVF-NEPAL as well as for upcoming ones. Apart from partner Partage et Soins and community contribution there are other individuals who have raised money for medical equipment and medicine.

Dr Heli Vaterlaws and Lorry Williams organized fund raising event and raised £406.50. Similarly- Swansea University staff raised £218.65 during St David’s Day & Gareth Ayres raised £325.20 participating London Marathon in 2012.

As the first and one of the major projects under Jhumlawang Village Foundation (JVF-NEPAL), the opening of the Community Health Centre for basic health centre is much awaited fruit of everyone associated with the project. With this encouraging news in mind, JVF-Nepal will be working harder in mobilizing community, Diaspora members, and getting supports from like-minded people and organizations to work on sustainable development of the village.

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