A fresh community involvement experience for most participants, Project Nama5te brought 24 students from NTU Hall of Residence 5 to the mountainous nation of Nepal from 3 to 16 June 2019.
While this was not the first trip organised by the hall’s Twenty-One Young Hearts Committee, Nepal was a new location for the whole team, who were able to soak in the vibrant culture of the country while contributing to a better learning experience for their beneficiaries.
The project comprised of two parts – classroom construction and interacting with the children of the Kavre Deaf School in Dhulikhel, as well as planning and carrying out lessons for at the Shree Chunadevi Secondary School in Nagarkot. Thus, over two weeks, the volunteers were exposed to the Nepalese way of learning and imparted their own knowledge to the students they connected with. They also planned to help out in the areas of infrastructure and sanitation, which some villages in the rural areas lacked.
At their first stop, Kavre Deaf School, the participants did their best to involve themselves with their activities and engage with the deaf children, as well as work on building classrooms for the school.
For the latter, they worked together with professional construction workers, which allowed the project to be completed as planned, although most students did not have prior knowledge in the area. Participants felt constructing the classrooms by hand was a meaningful experience, as it allowed them to give back to the village that had warmly welcomed the Hall 5 residents.
Project Nama5te then carried on to their second beneficiary, Shree Chunadevi Secondary School. Their second stop placed more focus on interacting with the children, as they brought games to “break the ice” while discovering more about the local culture. In addition, the team had meticulously planned for enrichment classes, which were successfully carried out for the Nepalese children despite the language barrier.
Engaging with the students imparted many life lessons to the team members and allowed them to contribute towards creating a conducive learning experience for the children. Ultimately, it was a culturally enriching journey of self-discovery that benefitted communities, which they hope will be sustained through further overseas exposure programmes.
“I learnt so much from the interaction with the children from both Kavre Deaf School and Shree Chuna Devi Secondary School, and I think I can say for everyone that this experience has truly left such a great impact on all of our lives.” Priscilia Tan, Student Volunteer
About Twenty-One Young Hearts
Twenty-One Young Hearts is a committee in NTU Hall of Residence 5 that aims to provide opportunities for residents to go beyond their comfort zone and help those in need. Along with collaborative partner Chong De Volunteers, the students plan and execute visits to nursing homes locally. The committee has also carried out yearly community involvement programmes to overseas beneficiaries since 2012.