Good morning to everyone.
Many of you already know that for 5 years we have managed an association in Spain called Langtang Disaster Relief Fund, to help in any way possible after the avalanche that devastated my village during the earthquake of 2015 in Nepal.
Through the association we were able to contact many people who wanted to help us in different ways, and we coordinated those aids in the best possible way.
Some sponsored children so that they could continue with their studies, others even sponsored families who had lost everything. There were small NGOs that contacted us to help with the reconstruction of houses, or offering basic materials, and there are those who decided to come to Langtang as volunteers to help with their hands. We also collected 32,000 euros in donations which we distributed in February 2017 among all the surviving families of Langtang.
Thanks to all those wonderful people Langtang recovered in a short time and the survivors had new homes in which to take refuge during the winter and were able to resume their daily activities.
The tourist circuit was reopened the year after the disaster and today they are perfectly prepared to welcome visitors again.
I want to clarify that when we talk about Langtang’s recovery we refer to the tourist and survival part above all, because we already know that the psychological sequels of the survivors are a separate issue that may never be cured.
During these last years we have continued doing different activities to help the development of the community in the area of Langtang. But we no longer ask for or give donations, except in specific cases of basic need, because we have realized that any economic help from the first push means creating expectations and dependencies that are not healthy.
That’s why with the travel agency we want to give direct work to the most humble families, to help their domestic economy in a dignified way, without depending on charity from NGOs. It is an extra job where they can feel proud to show their way of living seeing that this is appreciated by foreign visitors.
The experience with Langtang Disaster Relief Fund was very positive, but we think that it has already fulfilled its function of first basic aid and should make way for something else. Now Langtang is no longer a disaster, but is once again a welcoming town in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition where the traveler will feel at home.
Of course there are still many things to do to help the development of the community, and there are many humble people, especially the elderly, who live in difficult situations and struggle every day to survive in the mountains. To attend to these new projects with calm and projection in time we have created Mendo Family Foundation, an NGO that for legal and logistic reasons this time has its headquarters in Nepal.
Thanks to the incredible help and funding offered by our Italian friends at Julè & Namasté (with whom we have been collaborating since 2017), we can now tackle a new, much-needed project.
This time it is direct aid to needy elderly people who were left homeless after the earthquake of 2015. Many have been neglected as a result of the death of their immediate family or the migration of children and grandchildren to Kathmandu or outside Nepal to seek their lives, so every 2 months we go up to bring them food, firewood, cooking equipment, clothing or anything else they may need.
You can see more details about the activities we are doing in the web site of Mendo Family Foundation.
Although the travel agency and the NGO are different projects, the part of solidarity trips and help to my people in Langtang are touched very closely, especially in the trips of the section “Live Langtang”, where you will be able to know much more about the culture and the way of family life of the inhabitants of the mountains.
Thank you all very much for letting us explain all these things that are so important to us. A big hug and see you soon.