Namaste to Kamlaris: One Teacher's Story: Telling Our Stories; Living our Livesby Jodie K. Scales
There are some words that just make your skin crawl. You know the kind of words I am talking about, those that no matter how they are said have no redeeming qualities. I learned one of those words last summer – Kamlari. It is a Nepali word for the female children who are sold by their own parents into slavery working in the home of upper caste families. Many of… See more details below
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There are some words that just make your skin crawl. You know the kind of words I am talking about, those that no matter how they are said have no redeeming qualities. I learned one of those words last summer – Kamlari. It is a Nepali word for the female children who are sold by their own parents into slavery working in the home of upper caste families. Many of these girls are sold when they are as young as five or six years old and put to work for 14 to 18 hours a day in the most horrific of living conditions. There are organizations rescuing and trying to make a better life for these children. I saw children living in orphanages that were far better off than many of the non-orphaned children of Nepal. Many of the children living at Nepal Orphans Home have been given back a sense of childhood and family that had been lost to them through poverty and the horrific practice of female child slavery know as Kamlari.
Michael talked about the spirt and warmth of the children after being rescued. I still wasn’t quite sure I understood the realities of the world he described, yet I knew that the work he was doing was changing the lives of so many children; children born into unbearably cruel situations were being given back a chance to be children and live as a part of a loving family.
Michael Hess is such a modest man, he seems to me to be the type of person who very quietly goes about doing the right thing (significant things just because they are the right thing) never seeking acknowledgement or praise for himself. He works tirelessly in his efforts to improve the lives of others and sincerely takes joy from the happiness and well being of the children and community members he works with. As we sat talking that particular morning I was beginning to realize that while I wanted to help the people of Nepal tell their stories, it was really Michael’s story that someone should be trying to tell.
Follow one teacher's journey inspired by something as frivolous as the classic rock song, “Kathmandu” by Bob Sager, a passion for traveling, and a combined love for teaching and writing, as her life is changed forever. “One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things” Henry Miller.
Two organizations to support teacher professional development are very much responsible for this story: Indiana Writing Project a part of the National Writing Project, and The Lilly Foundation Teacher Creativity Fellowship Grant program. Without either of these wonderful organizations this story might not have been told. It is to Michael Hess, Volunteer Nepal and Nepal Orphans Home that I lovingly dedicate this story and any proceeds made from it to.
This book is a free iBook. Please consider making a donation of any amount possible (maybe the amount you would have felt comfortable paying for the book) to help continue the work being done in Nepal:
Donate by Mail If you prefer to make your donation by check, please send to: Nepal Orphans Home, Inc PO Box 1254 Davidson, NC 28036
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