ECCA Volunteer Experiences: Emmanuelle’s Story

On July, Emmanuelle Ravat, a French volunteer doing her Master’s degree in International Relations at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland, flew in to Nepal to conduct a study regarding water purification. The research, which is interlinked with the WATASOL project is a part of ECCA’s ‘Safe Water for Healthy Nepal’ campaign.

Emmanuelle with ECCA staffs, staffs and students of Namuna Machindra School in Lagankhel during a Braille Paper Distribution program.

Emmanuelle with ECCA staffs, staffs and students of Namuna Machindra School in Lagankhel during a Braille Paper Distribution program.

During her month and a half long stay, she went to many places in and around the Kathmandu valley, including Khokana, Dhapakhel, Bansighat, Bungamati, Lele and Champi with the ECCA staff. Her main focus was to study about the water purification process in the Kathmandu valley.

After talking to many people and communicating with different partners, she observed that access to clean drinking water was a day to day struggle. It wasn’t just a lack of solution to the clean water, she remarked, adding that it was also the people’s behavior which exacerbated the whole scenario. ‘Even though people are aware of campaigns and the importance of clean drinking water, but this awareness doesn’t lead them to act on solving it,’ she said.

Emmanuelle with a fellow volunteer, Anna, during ECCA's 27th Anniversary at St. Xavier's College in Maitighar, Kathmandu.

Emmanuelle with a fellow volunteer, Anna, during ECCA’s 27th Anniversary at St. Xavier’s College in Maitighar, Kathmandu.

However, there are good things happening as well. ‘It was great to have heard about how people treat water, thanks to the school programs that send messages of clean drinking water,’ Emmanuelle said. She further added that this good streak could be increased if there were more partners to enlarge the WATASOL campaign and spread it with everyone.

A group photo of Old Vs. New Counselors' Friendly Football Match. Emmanuelle (ext. right) participated in various activities that happened in ECCA that took place during her stay.

A group photo of Old Vs. New Counselors’ Friendly Football Match. Emmanuelle (ext. right) participated in various activities that happened in ECCA that took place during her stay.

Besides the research, getting to know the Nepali culture kept Emmanuelle busy. She shared that the dal-bhat along with the local cuisines that she tried were a great palate changer. The food even inspired her to take cooking classes, ‘So that I can recreate it back home,’ she shared with a laugh. Asked what she loved the best about the food here, she said, ‘It’s just that the spices and the way one uses it here is so different from French cooking and it has struck me deeply.’

Emmanuelle smiles for a photo during her farewell ceremony.

Emmanuelle smiles for a photo during her farewell ceremony.

Emmanuelle is back to finishing her Master’s degree. She has been in the teaching profession for a long time and plans on working as a teacher. ECCA wishes her the best of luck for her future endeavors!

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