Ballarat Guide providing service in Nepal

June 28, 2017

One of our local Guiding families is off to Nepal to help after the earthquake. Brianna and her family will live in a village.

The 11th Ballarat Guide Unit have sent them off with a collection of items to give to Nepalese children, including school supplies, hygiene supplies, clothes and small toys such as yo-yos, skipping ropes and balls.

Big adventure awaits for Ballarat family

Article from The Ballarat Courier, June 26, 2017

by Derrick Krusche

WhitefamilyInstead of going to Queensland these winter holidays a young Ballarat family has settled on somewhere a little more adventurous: Nepal.

The Whites, who live on a bush block in Brown Hill, will be the first family to accompany Order of Australia recipient Graeme Kent on a trip to the Himalayan nation.

Mr Kent, who heads up not-for-profit organisation Aussie Action Abroad, has been making the trip with big groups of volunteers to help the Nepalese for almost 20 years.

But his is not just any ordinary charity.

Aussie Action Abroad has a focus on bringing architects, design professionals and those with a building background overseas to work on development projects such as housing.

 Volunteers, much like the Whites, roll up their sleeves alongside local tradesmen to build sustainable buildings for those doing it tough.

And the need for this in Nepal is more pertinent now than ever.

The country is still reeling from a devastating earthquake that killed nearly 9000 people in 2015.

Two years on and authorities are still rebuilding houses that toppled like dominoes during the disaster. Fortunately, Scott White has a background in engineering.

And his wife Julie is a teacher, who specialises in educating young girls about menstruation.

Young women on their period in Nepal are sometimes ostracised due to centuries-old religious beliefs.

Mrs White said she was keen to work with Nepalese children and get her daughters out of their comfort zone.

“I want the girls to appreciate what they have, and we wanted to do something for somebody else,” she said.

“I remember when I was in year 9 I went on a trip to Indonesia and I was gobsmacked and shocked at the difference in wealth.

“Although we’re middle class, I think my kids have everything they want. We take it for granted. So to be able to do something for someone else is really important.”

And her three bright and articulate young daughters were keen to meet Nepalese children in schools.

Mr White said the way to help countries out of poverty was through education.

“So to be able to help kids learn in a better environment is going to be really rewarding,” he said.

“But it will also be challenging.”

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