"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."      Anne Frank
Editor:   Barbara Hess
October, 2013


August Update

One evening near the end of July I received an e-mail from Jehan Seirafi, our former Volunteer Nepal director and a wonderful friend who has since founded to offer financial care for struggling orphanages. It was a brief e-mail in which she asked if we would be able to take in a 12-week-old baby girl whose feet had been cut off. I could not get the e-mail off my mind that night and the next morning I asked our house managers what they thought. I listened as they all offered really valid reasons as to why we should not take her in.  Read more


A Saturday at Papa's House

At Papa's House, life is never at a standstill.  It's a lively place where the children are active and cheerful in their fully-packed daily schedules. The children typically attend school six days a week, but Saturdays are special.

Here’s what Peter and Boo Hess, NOH President and NOH Secretary/Treasurer respectively, observed one Saturday in late May at Papa’s House.  The day began with an early meet and greet with the children at Harmony House and Lauren Yanks, a member of the NOH board of advisers.  Lauren had been in Nepal for nearly 8 months, making plans for our older boys and girls to be able to advance to college courses and eventually to university. Lauren is pictured here with Kabita (Gabby) who has begun her second year at Herald College in hotel management. 

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Shortly after bidding farewell to Lauren who was heading home to the U.S. later that day, Boo welcomed Hira and Sharda from CAP-Nepal (Center for Awareness Promotion), a local organization that provides shelter for women and children who have been living in “life threatening and rights-denied conditions.”  The organization focuses on reducing gender-based violence and expands awareness of the dangers to women in the son-preference culture of Nepal.  CAP-Nepal is one of several local placements for Volunteer Nepal participants who can help in many ways, including editing the web site or giving career counseling. 
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About 40 girls (15 yrs and older) assembled on
the Harmony House upper deck.  Our girls have been living at Papa’s Houses in a protected environment, treated with respect and kindness.  Our intention was not to re-hash our own girls’ histories, but to educate them about the discriminatory treatment they may
face outside the walls of Papa’s Houses and how to cope. 

The girls listened with rapt attention and asked thoughtful questions at the end.  Hira and Sharda agreed they would be delighted to come back to speak with the girls again.

As this meeting came to a close, everyone headed downstairs to find that students from a Kathmandu dental school were examining the teeth of every child residing in Papa’s Houses.  What a sight!  Most met this fate with their usual stoic manner and even cheerfully; others like Juno would rather not open up.

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When the dental students were done checking teeth, Michael Hess (Papa) served up his tiffin concoction for the day -- green rice with pistachios.  Sound delicious??  It was!  Everyone chowed down.

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After lunch Peter and Boo met Aakriti and her didi Jishnu.  Aakriti is a five-year old who is blind and severely hearing impaired.  She moved to Papa’s Rainbow House last March from the government baby orphanage Bal Mandir in Kathmandu.  She has her own tutor Shivahari who teaches her sign language and mobility skills.  Aakriti has a new walking stick which she learned to sweep and tap from side to side to locate objects in her path.  Aakriti loves to dance and her giggle is infectious.   She is supported at Papa’s House by former volunteer Anne Zrenda and the Aakriti’s Kids Foundation in Chicago.  Anne has advocated for Aakriti over the last several years and is overjoyed to have Aakriti now permanently residing at Papa’s House.

                  DSC03740                  Anne Zrenda with Aakriti
             Aakriti with her didi Jushnu              Aakriti with Anne 4 years ago

Saturday afternoon at Papa’s House is recreation time for the girls and boys who congregate on the playground beside Harmony House.  The children play basketball and soccer, read and sing, enjoying the open space of the playground and the camaraderie of their friends.  Michael Triozzi, who had been volunteering since late February, visited with the special children he had home-schooled at the beginning of his stay, pictured here -- the residents of Rainbow House.  Two days later he was headed home to Ohio to find a job.  Little did any of us know that in less than two months Michael T would be back in Dhapasi in the position of Program Director of Volunteer Nepal.

                                      New VN Director Michael on right

Volunteers at Curry Without Worry

During the past year, Volunteer Nepal has offered a once-weekly placement in Kathmandu, where volunteers can spend a Tuesday afternoon and evening with the Nepali non profit organization called Curry without Worry.  Peter and Boo spent a memorable 40th wedding anniversary, preparing food and serving 350 homeless, along with four other volunteers, and accompanied by VN staff Mrs. Pandey and Sudip.

Boo writes, “We took the typical overcrowded micro into the city where road construction begun a year ago was far from completion, slowing traffic to a snail’s pace. As soon as we stepped off the micro, the rain began to pour for the entire walk to the orphanage where the food is prepared.  But it turns out that being soaked had a good cooling effect as we chopped and sorted vegetables for a couple of hours.  Then we had a little "time off" before we had to roll out the roti, so we stepped into the sun and let our shoes dry out.  The roti (flatbread) was cooked in hot oil and we were pleased to do the taste-test.  We again had "time out" while the rice cooked.  No taste-test necessary.  When all was done we walked to Durbar Square expecting the van carrying the food to be right behind us.  But in fact, it was stuck in Jamal for an hour and half so we waited for the food to arrive alongside the patient but hungry crowd.  It was dark and rainclouds threatened, and finally when our prepared food arrived, we had a bit of electric light in the square, the rain held off, the leaf plates held up, and we served the still hot rice, soup and veggies, and the wonderful roti.  No riots had broken out in the long wait.  This was a great day for volunteers.”

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Update on Dhan and his family

Dhan is the young man who last spring underwent a kidney transplant.  His mother donated the kidney.  Along with Dhan’s father, they live nearby Papa’s House and Dhan continues to receive medicine that will assist his body from rejecting the organ.  He is doing well, as is his mother, and Dhan presently takes a tailoring class at the Chelsea Education Center.  Basia Going, who fundraised in Canada for Dhan's surgery, came to Nepal in June to meet Dhan and see for herself how he is becoming stronger every day. 

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                     Dhan (right) with his father,mother, Pratap and Basia

Chelsea Education Center now in session

Vocational classes have begun!  Classes are held between normal school’s end and supper.  Beginning in April, the first classes were in motorcycle repair, cell phone repair, computer technology, tailoring, hair styling and music -- voice, keyboard and guitar.  The young people (mostly 15 years and older) arrive at the door of the old volunteer house which is now dedicated to the Chelsea Education Center classes, chatting excitedly and ready to learn.  The instructors are equally focused and prepared for the class they teach each day. 

The first session ended in July and the new session includes extra classes in the popular ones -- beauty salon and tailoring. About 70 children take advantage of learning these new skills.

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Volunteer Nepal goes to the Israeli Embassy

Michael Triozzi, who joined the Volunteer Nepal staff as Program Director in July, has sent this account:

"Last month we had the privilege of hosting Liron Yochai – a representative from Latet, an Israeli humanitarian aid organization – for a few weeks.  During her time here, Liron felt an especially deep connection with our NOH boys’ home, and she arranged for Chaim Chosen, the acting Israeli ambassador to Nepal, to come for a special dinner with the boys.  Impressed by the cooking skills of Pratap (the boys’ house manager) and by the charm and humor of the kids, Ambassador Choshen invited Pratap and the Volunteer Nepal staff members to attend a dinner party he was giving at his residence.

None of us had ever met an ambassador before, much less been to an ambassador’s house.  When I packed my bags for Nepal three months ago, it somehow slipped my mind to bring any appropriate clothing for diplomatic events.  (I’ll have to add that to our recommended packing list in the volunteer manual).  So no matter what else happens in my life, I will always get to say I went to dinner at an ambassador’s residence in jeans and tennis shoes.  In my defense, they were nice jeans.

We arrived before the rest of the guests – fashionably on time – and had the chance to chat with the ambassador, explore the garden, and play with his dog, Zula.  

The other guests were mostly a group of Israeli students who had come for a week of volunteering in Nepal.  The speeches were lovely.  Or I assume they were.  They were mostly in Hebrew.  At the beginning of his remarks though, Ambassador Choshen found Pratap in the crowd:
“I have had the opportunity to meet some very special people during my time in Nepal,” he said “The other day I had dinner at Nepal Orphans Home, and I met Pratap, a wonderful man and father to an incredible group of boys.”  He described how deeply moved he was by the experience.  It was a great moment for Pratap, who has truly been a father to the NOH boys for the past three years, and it made all of us very, very proud.

The other wonderful result of the event was that Pratap discovered hummus.  Impressed by it, he summoned the ambassador’s chef for detailed instructions on how to make the dish.  He wouldn’t believe that there were only three ingredients, or that he didn’t have to bake it in a special tandoori oven.  The ambassador laughed and said it was very easy to make – in fact he knew of a town in Israel where they had made a whole satellite dish full of hummus to try to break a world record.

Pratap did end up making hummus for Friday dinner at the boys’ home – with a distinctly Nepali twist, of course.  He added chili peppers and served it over rice.  I could have eaten a satellite dish full of it.

And so it was a successful night: a crash-course in diplomacy, a successful exchange of cultures, and a new recipe in Pratap’s cookbook."

Volunteer Nepal staff Michael, Sarita, Mrs. Pandey, Pratap and Hikmat meet acting
Israeli ambassador Chaim Chosen, who is diplomatically attired.


We are so grateful to our donors and supporters all over the world.  Thank you, thank you, thank you to ...

Life's Handy Work for covering the cost of +2 Education programs for five of our young people;
Sanctuary for Kids for providing funds to pay instructors and buy materials for the Chelsea Education Center, and to improve the nutritional needs of our children;
Possible Worlds for paying the education expenses of 20 children at Skylark School;
The McCadden Family for their numerous bake, book and craft sales to support the children at Papa's Houses;
Betsy Brindza for the large duffel bag full of LEGOS, carried to Nepal by volunteer Marlene Boas;
Basia Going and her fellow yogis for raising funds for Dhan's surgery and follow-up medical expenses;
Hannah Saltzman and friends at Cushing House, Smith College, for raising funds for baby Hope's medical care;
Saudi Aramco School for many duffel bags full of toys, sports equipment, supplies and clothes;
Tamara Chant and friends in Abu Dhabi, Israel and Paris for tirelessly spreading awareness of NOH and Volunteer Nepal around the world;
Philip and Katarina Sparling, eight-year-old twins, for sending donations collected in lieu of birthday presents for the last four years.
Glenn Detrick for his generous funding of the Chelsea Education Center, in memory of his daughter Chelsea;
Carola Drosdeck for the handmade aprons, tote and wine bags sporting the NOH logo, and numerous presentations given to spread awareness of the status of children in Nepal.
The Jester Bee Co. of Mims, FL, so incredibly generous;

... to all the donors and friends of Nepal Orphans Home -- we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. 

Holiday cards available

We have holiday cards for gift-giving.  Each card reads "In your honor a donation has been made to Nepal Orphans Home" on the back.

These cards, with plain envelopes, are available upon request.  We will send 4 per $100 donation.  Please contact NOH Treasurer Barbara Hess at

If you would like to give an alternative gift, please see our Wish List on the web site.


Nepal Orphans Home receives no government support and relies on the contributions of individuals sharing our mission to provide for the welfare of children in Nepal who are rescued from slavery, orphaned, abandoned, or otherwise not supported by their parents.

Please help support our amazing kids by making a donation in any amount at our website. A wish list is available for those who want to make contributions for specific purposes. Alternatively, various gift packages and descriptions of current projects are available at Universal Giving by typing Nepal Orphans Home beside the "Filter by" box.

If you would like to make a stock donation, please contact Barbara Hess, Treasurer of NOH, Inc., at to obtain the routing number for our account.

Contribute just by conducting internet searches using the Goodsearch search engine at and designating Nepal Orphans Home as the recipient of the funds raised by your searches. Goodsearch can also be used for online shopping, through which leading companies donate a portion of the sales to Papa's House.