Counselors in action; Raising safe drinking water issues in Kathmandu valley

As the valley faces rising cases of cholera, ECCA has been organizing more community awareness programs related to safe drinking water within the valley. Since past few weeks, ECCA counselors are actively engaged in conducting safe drinking water programs at vulnerable parts of the city to bring up issues of preventive actions.  The programs not only make communities aware about safe drinking water, but it also intensifies youth involvement in raising community issues.

Pratik , our new ECCA intern shares his experience of organizing WATA stall with senior counselors at Mangalbazzar, Lalitpur:

“Waking up early in the morning with zeal to aware people about water treatment to avoid ongoing water borne diseases of the city was certainly refreshing. As visitors approached us from busy market of Mangalbazzar with curiosity, we explained them about the recent outgrowth of waterborne diseases. As one of the solutions to making water safe, we presented WATASOL, a chlorine containing liquid that disinfects unsafe water.”

About 100 people visited the stall over one day. Shrestha further expressed about their response:

“I was surprised to see how cooperative people were. In my view people were pleased to find a solution that could help them protect their family from being sick.”

blog.jpgSujan, one of our active ECCA counselors who organized another WATA stall at Manamaiju however shares a different side of the story.  “Since WATASOL was new to them they were not sure about its using it at the beginning. As we explained about its increasing pollution of water and water testing techniques, they were shocked to hear that their daily consuming water is so polluted. Some of them agreed to use Watasol and some of them wanted to confirm the water polluted fact and took coli form vial for testing purpose”, he says.

“Overall they seemed cleared about our motive and we were happy about it. And we hope our action will bring positive change and awareness in people and thus promote healthy life.”

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WATA stall at Manamaiju

Here are few glimpses of a street drama conducted by ECCA in collaboration with Amarapur CLC at Bungamati where counselors performed to address drinking water issues and also rising cholera cases. WATA stall was placed by nature club members of Tri-Ratna Co-operative Secondary School.

 

“Drinking water sources are often polluted, the rainy season adds up to the problem of unsafe drinking water”, shares Yaji, one of the performing counselors.

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Street drama at Bungamati conducted in collaboration with Annapurna CLC

As we attempt to make communities aware about safe drinking water issues, we expect positive outcomes and behavioral change among people.

ECCA Grooms Parents, Teachers and Students in Dolakha

Apparently, students are not the only ones in need of improvement.

On 19th April 2016, four schools of Jhule VDC, Dolakha participated in ECCA’s initiative programme meant for all school stakeholders and students. Parents and teachers from all four schools (Amar Higher Secondary School, Jana Prabhat Secondary School, Janta Lower Secondary School, NayaJyoti Primary School) plus a social mobilizer and a VDC representative took part in 3 days long School Environment Planning and Visioning Training where as students separately participated in ECCA Camp conducted at each school that continued for 4 days. Continue reading

The Youth Experience Exchange- Sending Letters to an International Friend

With much excitement Nepalese students of the Youth Experience Exchange Program again gathered to meet at ECCA on 6th of April, 2016. This time the meeting was short but fun. The students received personal letters from students of exchange schools in Finland. In response, they shared similar and contradictory issues about Nepal, its culture, tradition and environment. The letters written by Finnish students themselves brought much excitement among Nepalese students. Continue reading

Empowering Youths for Sustainable Development Practice

With reference to sustainable school improvement strategy, ECCA (Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness) conducted 3 days long Youth Training Program on Project Initiative from March 2- 4, 2016. The program was specially designed for the project; ‘Preparing School Stakeholders for Re-development and Improving Health and Sanitation of Schools’ (with funding partner action medeor e.V.) to be implemented in 4 schools of Jhule VDC in Dolakha. The program held a primary objective of introducing sustainability fundamentals as well as crucial issues on school environment, WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) and First-Aid. 20 enthusiastic individuals took part in the program.

People, process and perspective are three main points of visioning. I especially liked the idea of exploring state of mind through meditation and drawing. I found this approach much different and effective.”- Aruna Puri, ECCA counselor

I never knew this much about mechanism of school and its system. Over the three days, my thinking has changed.” – Bipin Karki, participant

Changes can be brought about by youths in the most efficient form. Our mission is to train young members of the society through experts then mobilize them to make significant changes in the community”, says Yogendra Chitrakar, Executive Director of ECCA.

Capable trainees will now be mobilized in Jhule for future programs.

Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness (ECCA) has been a leading organization in the sector of social mobilization and community development. ECCA works closely with youths and school children to encourage positive change and to develop innovative ideas so as to make a brighter and greener future for generations to come.

-Upama Tamla (Rai), Media Associate, ECCA

 

 

Uplifting Nature Clubs through Management Trainings

Southern Lalitpur is one of the core regions where ECCA Nepal has been working for past 2 decades to enhance quality education and school environment. The program comprises of involving students that make them participate and motivate into activities where the students can learn as well as contribute towards improvement of school. Various software program, nature club establishments and trainings, and other support are the activities of ECCA to promote students in quality education and behavioral change.

As such of a regular program, a two days training program was organized for nature club members from Feb 1- Feb 13, 2016. The program, which was supported by Wilkins Memorial Trust, welcomed 25 participants from each nature clubs of 9 different schools. The prime objective of this program was to develop different life skills and responsibility handling skills  among nature club members for conducting effective and sustainable programs. Participants were from:

  1. Shree Bag Bhairab Higher Secondary School -Kaleshwor
  2. Shree Magar Gaun Higher Secondary School -Sankhu
  3. Shree Goth Bhanjyang H.S.S-Dalchoki
  4. Shree Bag Bhairab Secondary School-Chaughare
  5. Shree Gyanodaya L.S.S-Chaughare
  6. Shree Kalidevi H.S.S-Malta
  7. Shree Bhidyadeshori H.S.S-Asrang
  8. Shree Janajagriti H.S.S- Ikudol
  9. Shree Mahakalidevi H.S.S-Bhattedanda
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ECCA counselor Ms. Malati Khatri during Life Skill session

To conduct the two days training camp in each school, the group was divided into two teams who mobilized around the targeted schools. The training camp content comprised of strengthening of nature club, promotion of nature club activities, importance of greenery management and herbal garden, life skill activities, WASH session and activities, GLOBE activities (atmosphere observation and data collection) and alternative energy usage sessions like IAS (Improved Animal Shed), ICS (Improved Cooking Stove).

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ECCA counselor Mr. Shambhu Maharjan(with glasses) conducts ‘Trust Fall’; a life skill activity

“The training helped to erase our confusions regarding club management and organizing effective and needed programs. I am now more capable of handling my responsibility as the secretary of my club”, said one of the participants.

 

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Nature Club members prepare their annual plan during the training

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Students proceed to cloud reading after the orientation, Shree Goth Bhanjyang H.S.S. , Dalchoki

During the training, students were able to make their annual plan for nature club and also get ideas for selecting types of programs. This will now help them to enhance their club activities and promote their role in well managed and sustainable school improvement. Students were especially interested in knowing more activities involving GLOBE protocol

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ECCA counselors with the trainees, Shree Bag Bhairav Secondary School, Chaughare 

ECCA can conduct further more programs with specialization on hygiene and green environment, as there are still not enough sanitary facilities and green environment on school.

-Malati Khatri, ECCA Counselor

ECCA Nepal signs 3 years Project Agreements with DDC, DEO in Eastern Nepal

‘Supporting Youth for Making Child and Environmentally Friendly Schools in Nepal’ is a student oriented co-project of ECCA (Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness) and Taksvärkki ry with an objective of establishing pleasant and efficient learning environment for students of rural Nepal. The project will be implemented in 15 government schools of three districts- Jhapa, Morang and Dhankuta along with youth exchange programme in 2 schools of Lalitpur.

During first week of February 2016, ECCA signed project agreements with district government officials with an aim to bring them together with other school stakeholders. Besides comprehensive discussions on work plan and agreement signing, ECCA visited School Management Committee, Parents Teacher Association and Nature Clubs of each project schools in all three districts for sharing of drafted school improvement plans prepared by school stakeholders themselves during training camp conducted in November.

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Meeting with Child Club, PTA and SMC at Shree Sagma Secondary School, Dhankuta

“We aim to bring around maximum involvement of each school stakeholder for effective and sustainable outcome from this project”, said Rabindra Khatri, ECCA program officer during the agreement discussion. “From providing regular trainings for nature clubs to supporting schools for WASH infrastructures, we are ready to help in every possible way. But for that, we need co-operation and initiation from young students as well as school representatives”, he added.

“Most of the schools residing in extreme hilly and rural area like ours lie far from interest of people mainly because reaching here is a difficult job. It takes hours to reach schools and even if someone agrees to help, simply transporting materials for infrastructure development or manpower takes double or triple of time, effort and expenses”, shared headmaster of one of the schools in Letang, Morang. “We have been trying to make our schools better for education. Thank you for reaching out to help us. This brings a new beginning for everyone of us here.”

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“I wish we had a better place to safely keep our books and… more books to study!”- Susma, class 9, Dhankuta

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School visit at Jhapa by ECCA along with District Program Officer of Jhapa Mr. Him Raj Sedai (second from left)

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.707031236066144.1073741959.116503395118934&type=1&l=d4240a7d4e

-Upama Tamla (Rai), Media Associate, ECCA

We need to be closer to nature; Youths speak during Climate Learning venture

Humans have an inseparable tie with nature- and science of course. And while the world is facing all sorts of environmental challenges, there are no restrictive lines that provide ‘making-a-difference’ licenses only to those studying environment related subjects. Especially in today’s generation where each conscious person is getting inclined towards environment protection activities, learning opportunities should and are being offered for all.

“I have come here today so that I can learn new things”, said Palistha  Sikhakar, a 20 year old college student while participating in Training For Youths on GLOBE Climate Learning conducted by ECCA (Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness) on January 25, 2016. The training, which was based on GLOBE protocol and was previously initiated by GLOBE international, held a prime objective of enabling young participants to estimate various physical, biological and chemical parameters of a locality as a result to upgrade their interest in #scienceasculture.

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Facilitator Dipesh Gurung elaborates on measurement of maximum/minimum temperature

 

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Practical on hydrology (turbidity viewing)

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Hydrology practical takes place on the banks of Bagmati river

While facilitator Mr. Dipesh Gurung made the sessions livelier by each second, the participants got more familiar with aspects related to water, atmosphere and biodiversity. Theoretical and practical activities on PH, transparency, electrical conductivity and temperature measurement of water was carried out on the banks of Bagmati river. Another phase included cloud cover readings and atmospheric temperature measurement (maximum and minimum) with the help of maxima minima thermometer and cloud charts. Along with this, participants got a chance to practically know about landcover investigation and tree canopy including DBH(Diameter at Breast Height).

The participants at the end of the day were enthusiastic to learn even more. “I found this training highly useful even for my academics”, said Aruna Puri, an undergraduate student of Environmental Science.

“This kind of program along with amplifying one’s knowledge in scientific aspects also helps to get an idea of his/her surrounding locality and the kind of impacts made by various agents.”

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Trainees mark area for landcover investigation

ECCA Nepal prioritizes youth involvement while making efforts in any developmental activity of community such as this. The trainees will pass on their learning to young students of different schools in eastern Nepal as a part of school improvement program of ECCA which is supported by  partner organization Taksvärkki ry.

-Upama Tamla (Rai), Media Associate, ECCA

 

WE HAVE A MESSAGE FOR YOU

 


Dear all,

Environmental Camps for Conservation Awareness (ECCA) is currently in its 29th year of establishment. Over the years, we have succeeded in making significant improvements in the sector of WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), school environment, community development, promotion of alternate and renewable technologies (A Clean Solar Alternative to Kerosene Lamps,  ICS training) and even conservation related entrepreneurship. We can proudly say that our actions have helped people change their lives. Women in Jajarkot have learnt to invest in income generating activities through saving and credit schemes initiated among their own group. Children of Dolakha have learnt to initiate community awareness programs on their own. Our actions have made a difference in a sense that each trained member in the society now bears a sense of responsibility. The earthquake was however a turning phase for all but it proved more of a reason to work harder right from renovation and rebuilding to development that offers sustainability. From construction of Temporary Learning Centers to formation of nature club in schools, we have been attempting to bring progressive change from local to national level.

This note, henceforth, is to remind each of you contributors for your priceless support because all our successful attempts would have not been possible without you. To all supporters who are incessantly helping us in every way, be it on site volunteering or project donations, we express our heartfelt gratitude. To every heart out there that believes in us, we are thankful.

Considering the present hardships (due to cold weather) being faced by the earthquake affected people (who are still living in temporary makeshift shelters), ECCA recently initiated a campaign Win Against Winter. We’re sure we’ll receive support from each one of you as well.

We wish to move on with your ever-growing aspiration to help our motives.

Thank you!

ECCA Nepal