I think what initially attracted me to using Alliance Nepal was the flexibility which it allowed. I knew I wanted to spread my time exploring the country whilst volunteering on different projects. Krishna immediately was so warm, welcoming and fantastic at allowing me to be flexible with the time I had.
The early days of arriving and getting used to being in such a different country and culture were all eased by the support of Krishna and his team. I was able to spend some time learning a little of the language before I moved in with a Nepali family.
I spent the first 3months of my trip living with Krishna’s family in a village about an hour north of Pokhara. I think being able to live as part of a Nepalese family was a huge bonus in being able to fully understand what ‘real Nepali’ life is like. Although slightly overwhelmed at first, I felt extremely welcomed into the home and absolutely loved my time there. I learnt so much in those first three months and my language was certainly tested as Ama had very little English! I never thought I would actually wake up and look forward to a plate full of rice and curry but I grew to love eating Dahl Bhatt.
Whilst living in the village, I spent my days teaching English in the local school. This was a real eye opener into the world of Education in Nepal and very different to what I was used to in England, however I found the pupils and staff very warm and welcoming and have fond memories of discussions over Nepalese politics with the staff!
As previously mentioned I’d wanted to spend some time exploring more of the country and decided to do the Annapurna circuit trek which took around 2 weeks to complete. This was such an amazing experience and it was wonderful to be immersed in the awesome Hilmalaya seeing some of the most breathtaking sites. Krishna helped me organise the trek and I linked up with a couple of other volunteers who wanted to do the same trek. Being able to share your experiences with other volunteers in invaluable and will create memories that you will never forget.
For the final month that I was in Nepal, Krishna organized for me to spend time in an orphan home. There were only 5 children at the home, which meant that you could really get to know them individually and build great relationships. Some of my favorite memories from this time are going out onto the lake and swimming with the kids and taking them to make batiks. The children are wonderful and have such open hearts which makes it difficult when you have to say goodbye.Overall I had the most amazing 5months in such a beautiful country and was extremely touched by the loving nature of all the Nepalese people. I gained treasured family and friends, who I hope to see again and again in the future. The support from Krishna throughout the time I was out there was just amazing and the projects he run are so invaluable to the communities out there.