PUMA Children’s Homes
We currently have 2 children’s homes right outside Kathmandu, Nepal. We house 27 girls and 18 boys. We provide for their physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Some of the physical needs are obvious things like, shelter, clean water to drink, nourishing food to eat, clothes, and education!
The kids eat 3 meals a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast and dinner consist of Dahl Bhat, which is rice (that’s the bhat part), dahl (that’s a lentil soup type gravy) and vegetables. On Wednesdays we add a hardboiled egg to the mix, and on Saturday, we have chicken! For lunch they have a lite lunch which consists of chow-chow soup, or cookies, or popcorn croissants or bread and jam to mention a few.
Each of our kids attends school on a daily basis. We currently have 33 kids in grades 2 thru 10. The school is about a 10 minute bus ride away. Class 10 is the highest grade they go in high school. When they complete class 10 they have to take the SLC tests (SLC means School Leaving Certificate). These tests are known as the Iron Gate. If you don’t pass these tests, then you cannot go onto higher education. So far out of all the kids we had take these tests, everyone has passed. We have 17 who will be taking the SLC this year.
The next level of education after class 10 is college. College is class 11 and 12. We have about 12 kids who are either in college or have completed college and now working.
We also take time to have fun! We like to play all types of games, board games, cards, American baseball, basketball, soccer and we like to watch dvd movies too.
We try to teach our kids responsibility … they all have chores to do. They all have time in the kitchen to help cook and they all do their own laundry.
The school that the kids attend is called an English medium school. This means that all of their subjects are taught to them in English. Because of this and because they have 2 American women living with them, they know English fluently. Since our kids know both English and Nepali, we have recently gotten the older kids involved with being interpreters when a medical outreach team comes from the USA to minister in the mountains. This has been a great blessing to the teams and to the kids as well. They come back from the mountains with a renewed outlook.
Two of our “success” stories are Gyan and Bindu Lama (sister and brother). They have been in our home for about 13 years. They lost their parents and other siblings in a mud slide when they were young children. Gyan and Bindu were literally pulled out of the mud. They were then brought to our home scared and confused. They are both in class 12 now. Gyan and Bindu were recently in the field with a medical team. Bindu helped one of the American doctors and Gyan helped in the lab/pharmacy and with helping to keep the kids occupied while their parents were being seen by one of the docs.
The kids in our homes have opportunities opened to them that they would never have if left where they were. They are getting an education, healthy meals, nutrition, medical care and most of all love.