Radhika and Rohan

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It has been just over a month since I returned from Maiti Nepal and what turned out to be the best thing I have ever done. Adjusting to life in Europe after what I experienced on this journey has been hard. I have found it difficult to find words to my feelings and emotions and trying to write has been almost impossible. Yesterday I saw a post on Facebook, like so many posts we see every day. It was of a young Asian girl with an old  man walking hand in hand. The photo caught my attention. It had already created a storm of comments of all sorts. I was left feeling like most people here in our Western world really haven´t got a clue. Just because a girl has a smile on her face, we think she is happy.

So today I woke up with the urge to give you all a little recommendation on a book that you should read. It is called: Radhika´s story. Incredible book.

I met Radhika and her son Rohan during my visit in Nepal and I have also found a sponsor for little Rohan who is now 12 years old. They came to Maiti Nepal when Rohan was 4 years old and still when I met Rohan, he was speaking very quietly and is very timid but with a cheeky little smile. Radhika was trafficked as a young girl and gave birth to Rohan in the brothel where she was forced to work. Often it is the children of the trafficked girls that are used to force the mum´s to comply with the brothel owners orders. Little Rohan was subsequently torture as a baby to make his mum work with a smile on her face and not cause problems.

We need to see further than what our eyes see and then we all know that no young girl would want to become a prostitute. Don´t fool yourselves please.

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Journey to Maiti Nepal

File 25-11-2017, 19 13 56I have been meaning to write for weeks but it became very hectic before the trip. We packed 8 suitcases full of donated clothes and soft toys to bring to Maiti Nepal. I want to thank everyone that has helped me with this collection. I can tell you that the children were so happy with everything we brought them.

They had prepared a beautiful dance performance show in our honor and the welcome speech held by one of the girls brought up at Maiti Nepal as baby and now 18 years old and working there, made me cry. (find parts of their performance on my instagram @mariannesteneholm) Our first two days we have spent with the children at the Teresa Academy (Maiti Nepal’s school) and with the smaller children residing at the shelters. We had brought face paint to play with the pre-schoolers but our visit was so special for the children that the elder classes also wanted to join us. In the end the whole court yard was full of hundreds of children with big smiles on their faces, hugging us and asking us questions.

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File 25-11-2017, 19 33 13File 25-11-2017, 19 35 13I have so many impressions and emotions going through my mind that I don’t know where to start and where to end.

For the next coming days, we will have some more serious meetings about urgent needs at Maiti Nepal shelters and which of those could be supported by the funds we have raised. I will be updating my blog with more information and photos from the trip again soon, I promise xxx

Getting ready to travel to Nepal

MAITI 2Our flights are now booked and I am so excited! We will fly out from London-Heathrow on the 21st November and be away for 2 full weeks. The flight goes via Muscat, Oman to Kathmandu with Oman Air . So far we are 4 people travelling. My sister is coming along. To share this special moment with her is just the best feeling. (Once again, I want to emphasize that all expenses for our trip is paid with our personal money, not from raised funds)

Vaccinations, hmm… I have just had them all prescribed from the Sanidad Exterior in Malaga and it is literally everything. Re-boost of Hepatitis A and B along with a Tetanus boost. Then cholera, tyfoid fever and dengue fever. Malaria is not necessary all over Nepal, only in certain areas, so for this I bring some tablets that you take only when/if travelling to the red zones.

I have so far raised close to 45,000€, and I am determined to make it past my goal of 50k before the trip in November! Stay tuned for more upcoming events where you can support Maiti Nepal and help me achieve my goal or simply make your donation HERE

xxx Lots of love

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