Bamboo Schools in Nepal

After writing about webpages to gain new perspectives and cultural taboos I want to introduce another topic of Every once in a while I am going to write about social projects and social entrepreneurs which are aimed at saving the environment, supporting people or simply making the world a better place.

I want to start with the Bamboo Schools in Nepal since I watched a recent report about these schools and its founder. With the rate of illiterates as high as 55 % and almost 30 million inhabitants there are approximately 16.5 million of illiterates in Nepal.

14 Bamboo Schools in KathmanduTo solve this problem in a sustainable way the Bamboo Schools have been launched in 2001 by Uttam Sanjel and now they already offer education for over 30,000 children in 14 districts of Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal. The uniqueness of this project is that the schools are also affordable for poor families because the monthly fee for every student is 100 Nepalese Rupies (1.17 USD/0.90 EUR). In these numbers everyone can see that there have to be other financial resources to match the expenditures. Mr. Sanjel says that there are some private institutions who are donating money for the construction, maintenance and administration of the school. Moreover he gets financial support by Karuna-Shechen, a network to raise funds for humanitarian projects in the Himalayan Region.

Education Project in NepalNevertheless it seems that the money is not enough since the interview provided information that some teachers cannot be paid since some months. But what I liked most during the whole documentation and by researching more information on this topic was the optimism and the spirit of the founder to help the following generations and his country with these schools and to fill the gap of the mismatched private and public schools in Nepal.

Facts of the Bamboo Schools in Nepal:

  1. build out of bamboo, a local and very sustainable material
  2. provides education from kindergarden until 10th grade
  3. classes are held mostly in English to prepare the children for international tasks (not provided in public Nepali schools)
  4. children from different backgrounds, religions, casts and genders are educated together
  5. financed by the monthly fee of 100 NER, private donators and Karuna-Shechen

His vision is to exceed the business to the all 75 districts of the country and to build one Bamboo University. In my opinion with his energy and drive he has good odds to succeed because he seems to fulfill two famous Nepali Proverbs.

  1. “It is the mind that wins or loses”
  2. “Opportunities come but do not linger”

I wish him good luck to take the opportunities and I encourage you to support such projects or other social entrepreneurs because it is their business which helps the society.

Please find attached an Interview of Uttam Sanjel on YouTube and an Information about the Bamboo Schools in Nepal provided by Karuna-Shechen.

1 thought on “Bamboo Schools in Nepal

  1. It’s amazing to see how dedicated Nepali people are to their community. When i was there i visited a school where many students were allowed not to pay any fees. Some of these kids lived too far away from the school, so the school “dean” takes care of them, in his Home (a mud house), during the week. It wasn’t a bamboo school, but nevertheless, it’s great to see how much they like to help eachother! This is just one more example of Nepali trying to increase the number of educated people in the country!

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